The Washington Stealth landed two players on the 2013 National Lacrosse League All-Pro Teams announced Tuesday.
Forward Rhys Duch made the first team and defenseman Mike Grimes was named to the second team. This was the second time Duch was named first-team All Pro, the first time coming in 2011.
“It’s awesome to be recognized,” Duch said. “Personal accolades are nice, but it’s not what we’re playing for. I’m defintely more excited for the game this weekend.”
Duch, in his fifth year, led the NLL in goals with 45. He scored in all 16 regular-season games. He finished third in the league with 96 points (45 goals, 51 assists) and ranked fourth with three short-handed goals and eighth in assists and shooting percentage (.213).
“My main focus was my mental game,” Duch said. “I had a lot of focus on mental preparation, just learning how to focus properly and maturing as a player. Athleticism was always my fallback, so that was a big change. It’s being able to keep a level head going with the ups and downs of the game.”
Duch, who also was named a second-team All-Pro in 2010, is joined on this year’s first team by forwards Garrett Billings of Toronto, Shawn Evans of Calgary, transition player Jordan MacIntosh of Minnesota, defenseman Kyle Rubisch of Edmonton and goaltender Matt Vinc of Rochester.
Vinc and Duch are scheduled to square off against each other Saturday afternoon in the 2013 NLL championship game in Langley, British Columbia.
Grimes, a seven-year veteran, earned his first All-Pro selection. He ranked second among NLL defenseman with 20 points (eight goals, a career-high 12 assists), third in goals and fourth in loose balls (95). He’s joined on the second team by forwards Callum Crawford of Minnesota, Curtis Dickson of Calgary and John Grant Jr. of Colorado, transition player Jesse Gamble of Toronto, and goaltender Brandon Miller of Philadelphia.
The All-Pro teams were selected in a vote of the league’s Board of Governors, general managers and head coaches.