April 3, 2013
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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. - Army senior close defenseman Brendan Buckley is one of 10 NCAA lacrosse student-athletes who excel both on and off the field and are finalists for the 2013 Senior CLASS Award. Announced on Wednesday afternoon, the candidates must be a senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Buckley carries a 3.987 cumulative grade-point average and ranks 11th in his class of over 1,000 First Class cadets. He posted a 4.0 GPA in the fall semester and was a first team Academic All-American last spring.
The reigning Patriot League Scholar-Athlete of the Year and a two-time all-league honoree, Buckley has been named to the Dean's List all seven semesters at West Point and has been honored with the Distinguished Cadet Award and Superintendent's Award for Excellence. An Engineering major, Buckley branched Field Artillery and posted with the 173rd Airborne Brigade in Schweinfurt, Germany.
A Massapequa, N.Y., native, Buckley serves as a team tri-captain and spent last semester as a Battalion Commander within the Corps of Cadets. In that role, he was in charge of overseeing the overall performance of more than 350 cadets. He has also mentored, monitored and counseled cadets who were struggling academically as his company's academic NCO (non-commissioned officer).
In addition, Buckley spearheaded a cadet mentorship program within his battalion, which led to cadets regularly visiting the West Point Elementary School to read to students, play sports and provide them with young mentors. He has also taken part in free youth lacrosse clinics at West Point for four years and is active in the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.
When it comes to Buckley's efforts on the field, they are right in line with those in the classroom and community. A three-year starter and leader of Army's defense, he was drafted by the Boston Cannons with the 54th overall pick in the 2013 Major League Lacrosse Collegiate Draft. Buckley, who finished last season ranked eighth nationally in caused turnovers, was a first team All-Patriot League performer last spring and was a 2013 Inside Lacrosse Face-Off Yearbook Preseason All-American (honorable mention).
This season, he leads the team with 16 caused turnovers and has played lock-down defense against some of the top attackmen in the nation. Included in that group is fellow Senior CLASS Award finalist Peter Baum of Colgate, who Buckley stymied in a 10-4 win at Colgate on Easter Sunday. In his finest performance of the season, the close defenseman held Baum without a point for the first time in 54 games. A preseason All-Patriot League selection, Buckley has started all nine games this year and earned Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week plaudits on April 1.
The finalists were chosen by a media committee from the list of 20 candidates announced in February. Nationwide fan voting begins immediately to help select the winner. Fans are encouraged to vote on the Senior CLASS Award website or on the Senior CLASS Award Facebook fan page through May 13. Fan votes will be combined with media and Division I head coaches' votes to determine the winner.
Army has produced one Men's Lacrosse Senior CLASS Award winner in former midfielder Andrew Maisano, who took home the hardware in 2010.
The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the 2013 NCAA Lacrosse Championships in Philadelphia May 25-27.
Peter Baum, Colgate
Jesse Bernhardt, Maryland
Brendan Buckley, Army
Clay Del Prince, Brown
Jason Gonos, Harvard
Mike Huffner, Bucknell
Peter Johnson, Yale
Matt Miller, Notre Dame
Jason Noble, Cornell
Scott Ratliff, Loyola (Maryland)
ABOUT THE AWARD
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award honors the attributes of senior student-athletes in four areas: community, classroom, character and competition. The award program is designed exclusively for college seniors who are utilizing their complete athletic eligibility, remaining committed to their university and pursuing the many rewards a senior season can bring. Premier Sports Management owns and manages the award.