June 1, 2006
WASHINGTON, DC - Virginia attackman Matt Ward was named the winner of the 2006 Tewaaraton Trophy, given annually to the top lacrosse player in the nation.
A senior from Oakton, Va., Ward was the leader of Virginia's national championship squad this season. A team captain for the second year in a row, he led the Cavaliers with 42 goals. 25 assists and 67 points. This is the third consecutive year he led the team in goals and total points.
He was dominant during Virginia's march to its second NCAA title in the last four years. He was named the Most Outstanding Player of the playoffs, setting a tournament record for most goals with 16. He scored five goals in the title game against UMass as Virginia became the first team in NCAA Division I history to complete a season with a 17-0 record. His five goals are the most in the championship game in six years.
Ward earned first-team All-American honors this year and received the Lt. Raymond J. Enners Award as the USILA's Player of the Year.
This season he was named All-ACC for the third consecutive season, only the 13th player in school history so honored. He led the ACC in points and goals, and was second in assists. Nationally he ranked fifth in goals (2.47/g), sixth in scoring (3.94/g) and 17th in assists (1.47/g).
During his career Ward was an integral member of three Final Four teams, including two national title squads, and won two ACC championships. One of the greatest offensive players to ever wear the orange and blue, he finished his career third in school history with 139 goals and seventh with 208 points. He ranks ninth in ACC history in career goals and tied for 16th in career points.
Ward becomes the second Cavalier to win the award. Midfielder Chris Rotelli received the Tewaaraton Trophy as a senior in 2003 after leading UVa to the national championship.
In addition to Rotelli, previous winners include Kyle Harrison from Johns Hopkins (2005), Syracuse's Michael Powell (2002 and 2004) and Hofstra's Doug Shanahan (2001).
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A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.
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