Four former Canisius College men’s lacrosse standouts continue to highlight the program’s success at the next level in the National Lacrosse League when Dan Coates ’11, Adam Jones ’11, Kevin Ross ’07 and Matt Vinc ’05 all opened the NLL regular season last weekend.
Coates anchored the Canisius defense during his four-year collegiate career. The St. Catharines, Ontario native became the first Griff defender to earn first-team All-MAAC accolades during the 2011 season when he led Canisius with 52 ground balls and placed second on the team with 18 caused turnovers. A 2011 first-round selection of Colorado, Coates gathered five loose balls in the Mammoth’s opener against Edmonton.
The program's first All-American in 2008, Jones helped the Griffs to their first MAAC title the same season. A three-time All-MAAC First Team selection, he ranks 10th in the school's record book with 129 career points and sixth with 98 career goals. The 2012 NLL Rookie of the Year with Colorado, Jones accumulated 148 points, 62 goals and 86 assists in his two years with the Mammoth. He recorded six points and four goals in the opener against the Rush.
A 2007 NLL first-round draft pick, Ross spent the 2013 season with Philadelphia, totaling 53 points, 20 goals and 33 assists. He graduated from Canisius ranked fourth in school history with 185 points, second with 126 goals and eighth with 59 assists. A three-time first-team All-MAAC selection, Ross was named the conference's Offensive Player of the Year in 2006. He posted five points and three goals in Philadelphia’s 17-13 victory at Buffalo in the season opener.
Vinc led the Griffs in ground balls in three different seasons and ranks fifth all-time with 258 career ground balls. A 2004 and 2005 All-MAAC selection on defense, Vinc was selected with the sixth overall pick in the 2005 NLL Draft as a goalkeeper and is currently a member of the Rochester Knighthawks. He has helped lead the Knighthawks to the past two NLL Championships and recorded 45 saves in Rochester’s 8-6 win over Minnesota on Saturday.
Overall, 11 Griffs have starred in the National Lacrosse League after playing at Canisius during the program’s history.