Freeland, Mich. – Senior attacker Jared Nycz (Buffalo, N.Y. / Iroquois), junior midfielder Chase Hunyadi (Pepper Pike, Ohio / University School) and junior defender Levi Petersen (Holt, Mich. / Holt) of the Alma College men's lacrosse team have been named to the All-MIAA All-Conference teams as announced by the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association on Tuesday afternoon. Nycz and Hunyadi both were named to the First Team while Petersen nabbed Second Team.
This is Nycz's fourth time named All-MIAA, making him the first men's lacrosse player in conference history to earn all-conference first team honors in all four years of his career. The senior was also named Offensive Most Valuable Player by the league, the second time he has received the award, another honor that no player in conference history had ever achieved before. The Buffalo, N.Y. native broke program records this season for points (90) and assists (51) in a single season. He has recorded a point in every game so far this season. In the Scots' 25-11 victory at Adrian College on April 9, the attacker scored a career-high eight goals.
"What can I say about Jared Nycz other than he's probably a once in career kind of player for any coach," Head Coach Michael Kinney said. "He works his tail off every single day, never takes a day off, is a phenomenal teammate, always leads by example, and holds himself to a very high standard. He's the most balanced player I've ever coached and he'll do anything to help the team win. Quite honestly, he's the best player to ever play in the MIAA and he made opposing coach's lives miserable in trying to figure out how to shut him down. We'll certainly miss him on the field for a long time."
Hunyadi takes home his first all-conference honor in his career for his stellar junior season. In MIAA regular season games, the midfielder ranked second in assists (16), third in points (30) and eighth in goals (14). He has scored a hat trick on four separate occasions so far this season including a season-high six goals against Kalamazoo College on April 6 in Alma's 22-9 victory over the Hornets. The Pepper Pike, Ohio native's fourth goal of the game at Calvin College on April 19 proved to be the game winner as the Scots held off the Knights for a 7-6 win.
"Chase Hunyadi was an amazing high school player in Cleveland, Ohio and was named a US Lacrosse All-American as a result. When he committed to Alma College I knew we landed a truly special player with tons of talent that could impact our program on the field and in our recruiting," Kinney said. "Good players want to play with talented players around them and our guys love playing with Chase. As a former Rookie of the Year, he's continued to grow and develop on and off the field. He moved from attack to midfield this year and it's been a huge benefit to our team."
Petersen also earns his first career all-conference honor during his time at Alma. The junior has started in 15 games this season while racking up team-high 15 caused turnovers and grabbing 38 ground balls, fourth most on team. The Holt native started in all six MIAA games this season for the Scots as the defense allowed just over 10 goals per game in league contests. In his second season with the Scots, Petersen has tied his career-high for caused turnovers while being two away from breaking his career-high for ground balls in a season.
"Levi Petersen has been an incredible competitor since he arrived on campus from Cleveland State University. His attitude and work ethic are incredible," Kinney said. "He's a guy that every coach wants and we're thrilled he's one of ours. I expect him to continue to play at a high level in the playoffs and make first team as a senior. He's a special defender."
The Scots head into the MIAA Postseason Tournament as the number three seed. Alma will travel to the two seed Albion College on Wednesday (May 1) to face off with the Britons in the semifinals at 5 p.m. for a trip to the league championship game on the line.