Kieran McArdle Repeats As BIG EAST Attack Player Of The Year As Red Storm Lands Four On All-Conference Teams|
April 29, 2014
QUEENS, N.Y. – For the second year in a row, St. John’s record-breaking attackman Kieran McArdle has been named BIG EAST Attack Player of the Year, joining three of his Red Storm teammates on the all-conference teams. McArdle was a unanimous first team selection while junior close defenseman Mark DiFrangia, senior attackman Kevin Cernuto and senior midfielder Ryan Fitzgerald were named to the all-conference second team.
McArdle is the first-ever St. John’s player to earn the BIG EAST’s Attack Player of the Year award and was also a unanimous first team choice by the conference’s head coaches in 2013. DiFrangia and Fitzgerald are first-time selections to the all-conference squads while Cernuto adds this year’s second team selection to a unanimous first team pick from last season.
“We are very proud of all of these guys,” said Red Storm head coach Jason Miller. “I think they each had really good individual seasons, which was recognized by the other coaches in the conference. It’s great to see Ryan finally get recognized for his contributions here, as well as Mark at the other end of the field. Kieran and Kevin have been our pulse for four years now, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge Colin Keegan, who wasn’t fortunate enough to be recognized as all-league but who has been equally as important to the success they all had as a unit in their time here at St. John’s.”
The Red Storm’s quartet of BIG EAST honorees helped the Red Storm to a 7-7 overall record and 3-3 conference mark this season. Despite missing out on a BIG EAST Championship berth on the final weekend of conference play, St. John’s enjoyed a season of firsts in 2014. The Red Storm defeated Long Island rivals Hofstra and Stony Brook four days apart in the month of March, marking the first time St. John’s has defeated both opponents in the same season. The Red Storm also won its first two BIG EAST contests of the season for the first time in program history and ended the regular season with an RPI of 25, second-highest in the conference.
For the second year in a row, McArdle finished the regular season as the BIG EAST’s leader in points per game (5.71), assists per game (2.86) and goals per game (2.86), ranking in the top-10 in the NCAA in all three categories. The Ronkonkoma, N.Y., native finished the season with 80 points on 40 goals and 40 assists, tallying 30 more points than the second-highest scorer in the conference. He was named BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week on three occasions and tied for the conference lead with three game-winning goals, including one in his final game at DaSilva Memorial Field in an 11-10 overtime victory over Villanova on Senior Day. McArdle marked a historic 2014 campaign by becoming St. John’s all-time career leader in points, assists and goals while becoming the first player in program history to record 200 points, 100 assists and 100 goals.
DiFrangia was the Red Storm’s outstanding defensive performer this season, ranking second in the BIG EAST and 10th nationally in caused turnovers per game at 1.86. The Fort Washington, Pa., native led St. John’s with 26 caused turnovers overall and added 37 groundballs on the season, second on the team. DiFrangia was named to the March 31 BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll after causing four turnovers and collecting four groundballs in a 14-7 victory at Providence, and tallied four caused turnovers and five groundballs in the regular-season finale at No. 10 UPenn last Friday. The junior also corralled a season-high eight groundballs in the season-opening 15-13 home victory over Holy Cross.
Proving himself again as one of the top offensive threats in the conference, Cernuto finished the regular season ranked fifth in the BIG EAST in points per game at 3.15 and eighth in goals per game at 2.31. Cernuto also led the conference in shots per game with 8.92 while recording seven hat tricks and producing a four-goal performance in a home victory over Georgetown. The Neshanic Station, N.J., native added 30 groundballs, fourth-most on the Red Storm, and moved into second place all-time at St. John’s with 110 career goals.
Fitzgerald marked his final season at St. John’s by recording career highs in points, goals and assists. The Cortlandt Manor, N.Y., native tallied 33 points, 22 goals and 11 assists in 2014, ranking 14th in the BIG EAST in goals per game at 1.57 while recording three hat tricks. Fitzgerald scored three times against Siena, Drexel and in the regular-season finale at UPenn, and in the victory at Stony Brook dished out a career-high three assists. The senior added 22 groundballs on the season and scored at least two goals in each of the Red Storm’s final four games.
All-BIG EAST Team and Major Awards in Men’s Lacrosse
Attack Player of the Year – Kieran McArdle, St. John’s, Sr.
First Team All-BIG EAST
Second Team All-BIG EAST %
& - unanimous selection for Midfielder of the Year