As players arrive back on campus and fall ball gets underway over the next few weeks a lot of discussion emerges around the upcoming season, and those discussions usually end up being around top players of teams.
With the Tewaaraton Award being the most prestigious any college lacrosse player can win, let’s take a look at who are some of the early candidates for the award this upcoming season.
It is without a doubt that Penn State senior attackman Grant Ament will be the talk of the country again this season, and is the front-runner in the Tewaaraton race already. Ament is coming off a historic comeback 2019 season after taking a medical redshirt in 2018.
Last season, Ament led the nation in points with 126 (30G/96A), broke the single-season assist record, moved into second place all-time in single-season points, and won the Lt. Col. J. I. Jack Turnbull Award for the nations top attackman. In addition to his personal accomplishments, Ament helped lead Penn State to their first conference title, first NCAA tournament appearance, and first Final Four appearance.
Ament is likely head and shoulders above everyone else at the moment for being the favorite to win the Tewaaraton in 2020. He is just that good, and has earned the right to be called the best player in college lacrosse.
Mac O’Keefe, Sr., A, Penn State
As Ament’s running mate, O’Keefe has also lit up the scoreboard and stuffed the stat sheet while leading that mighty Penn State offense. Last season, O’Keefe had 96 points (78G/18A). He led the nation in goals last season and is sure to be one of the biggest scoring threats in 2020, if not the biggest.
Chris Gray, Jr, A, North Carolina
Being third in the nation in points with 111 (49G/62A) last season wasn’t enough to get Chris Gray on the ballot as a Tewaaraton Finalist last season. Having transferred from Boston U. to North Carolina over the summer, Gray will have much more visibility, higher quality opponents week in and week out, and a deeper roster around him. If he does in fact flourish in Chapel Hill, the opportunities are endless.
Michael Sowers, Sr, A, Princeton
As the current face of Princeton lacrosse, Sowers has already broken multiple schools records during his three years of play and is the programs all-time career points leader with 255 (105G/150A). While he may appear to be the Tigers’ only high-caliber option at times, Sowers can take over games and put up gaudy numbers like we have seen in the past.
Jared Bernhardt, Sr, A, Maryland
Named a finalist last season, Bernhardt was a leader for the Terps as he put up 78 points (51G/27A) to help lead them to an NCAA quarterfinal appearance. With Maryland’s scoring depth its easy for guys to get overlooked or lost in the shuffle, but Bernhardt is among the nations best and has proven so already.
Jeff Teat, Sr, A, Cornell
Already being pegged as the likely number one pick in the 2020 NLL draft, Teat is as high-caliber as they come. Tallying 70 points (34G/36A) on an underperforming Cornell team last season, Teat has high expectations on his shoulders and effective playmakers around him to help keep the machine well oiled this season.
TD Ierlan, Sr, FO, Yale
No faceoff man has ever won the Tewaaraton, and after Trevor Baptiste didn’t cash in a few years back the hope that one ever could has faded a bit. However, Ierlan was named a Tewaaraton finalist last season and was a huge part of leading Yale to their second consecutive national championship appearance. He is also the NCAA leader in faceoff wins in a season, breaking his old record of 359 with 375 wins last season.
Under The Radar
Logan Wisnauskas, Jr, M, Maryland
Maryland’s leading scoring last season with 79 points (44G/35A), Wisnaiskas played a huge role in the success of the Terps and really helped their offense be as prolific as possible.
Michael Kraus, Sr, A Virginia
Helping lead the Cavaliers to a national championship last season, Kraus was a major catalyst behind their offense and contributes in a number of ways. He tallied 72 points (36G/36A) last season.
Jackson Morrill, Sr, A, Yale
Last season, Morrill led the Bulldogs on offense with 94 points (46G/48A) and was crucial in helping to led Yale to their second consecutive national championship appearance.