On Saturday, a day after Ohio State’s men’s lacrosse team overcame an 8-3 deficit to defeat Towson 11-10 in the NCAA semifinals, and a day before the Buckeyes face No. 1 Maryland with a national championship on the line, a program-record six OSU players were selected in the 2017 Major League Lacrosse Draft.
This new plateau doubled the previous high of three players drafted, which was set in 2013.
Midfielder Jake Withers was the first Buckeye taken as the Atlanta Blaze used the ninth overall pick in the first round on the Big Ten Specialist of the Year. This year, Withers led the Big Ten in faceoff winning percentage (.658) and ranked seventh in country with 7.6 groundballs per game. He is the third-highest drafted former OSU player.
Attackman Eric Fannell, who scored twice during his team’s third quarter comeback against Towson, was selected by the Rochester Rattlers in the second round with the 13th overall pick. The first-team All-Big Ten player led his team with 66 points and 30 assists this season.
Tom Carey, OSU’s starting goalie, will continue his career in Colorado as he was drafted by the Denver Outlaws in the eighth round with the No. 65 overall pick in the draft. He led the conference as a senior with a .544 save percentage.
Three midfielders – Johnny Pearson (sixth round, No. 53 overall), Tyler Pfister (seventh round, No. 63 overall) and JT Blubaugh (eighth round, No. 71 overall) – will remain in the Buckeye state as they were selected by the Ohio Machine.