ATLANTA – After averaging nearly five points per game and leading Grand Canyon to the title at the 2017 MCLA National Championships powered by Under Armour, Lopes’ senior attackman Joe Balestrieri has been named the Division I Player of the Year.
Balestrieri ended the season seventh in the country in points per game (4.88) with a total of 83 (62 goals, 21 assists) for Grand Canyon, which finished the year with a 16-1 record and its second championship in the last three seasons.
The Rancho Bernardo, Calif., product amassed at least two points in all 17 games this season and broke the seven-point plateau five times.
Balestrieri had a six-goal, three-assist performance in the opening round of the national tournament against Northeastern, leaving him one point shy of the single game tourney record.
At the MCLA National Championships, he scored 17 goals and dished out six assists in four games. On Wednesday, he was named an MCLA Division I First Team All-American attackman and was previously named the Southwestern Lacrosse Conference Offensive Player of the Year.
“He was focused on getting us to the winners circle, nothing else,” said Grand Canyon coach Manny Rapkin.