UAlbany's Thompsons Lead Iroquois to Historic Victory at World Lacrosse Championships
COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (July 21, 2014) -- UAlbany’s Miles Thompson and Lyle Thompson have led the Iroquois Nationals to a third place finish in the 2014 World Lacrosse Championships, the highest placement ever for the team. The Iroquois Nationals secured the bronze medal on Saturday by defeating Australia 16-5.
Previously, the Iroquois Nationals had finished fourth in 1998, 2002 and 2006. It is the first time that a squad other than Team USA, Team Canada or Team Australia has finished in the top-three in the history of the championships, which began in 1967.
Miles Thompson was the leading scorer for the Iroquois Nationals, combining for 16 goals and 15 assists, including a hat trick and an assist against Australia in the third-place game. Lyle Thompson earned two goals and two assists, tallying 16 goals and seven assists in the tournament. Lyle was also named to the all-world team as an attacker.
The Thompson brothers received widespread national media coverage while leading UAlbany to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament in 2014, and were named co-winners of the Tewaaraton Trophy, given annually to the nation's top collegiate lacrosse player.
The brothers have been surrounded by fans wherever they have traveled in Commerce City, Colo., the site of this year's edition of the quadrennial tournament. Even after losing to Canada in the semifinals on Thursday, the Thompsons took the time to sign autographs and take pictures for about 45 minutes with young fans who stuck around.
"Even though I was a little upset, I didn't want to leave the fans upset, with kids standing around," Lyle Thompson said to Lacrosse Magazine. "They've waited all week to get my autograph. I'd like to give that to them, at least."
In the end, the Thompsons delivered a historic victory with their bronze media triumph for the Nationals, the only Native American team to compete in any sport in top flight international competition.
UAlbany lacrosse had a hand in other play as well. Assistant coach and 2007 UAlbany alum Eric Wolf assisted Team Israel, which marked itself as one of the top teams outside the Blue Division with a seventh-place finish. Riley Lasda and Eli Lasda suited up for Team Latvia, leading the squad to a 5-3 record and 19th place, earning that mark after defeating Poland 17-7.
Eli Lasda earned three four-goal performances in consolation play, combining for 17 goals and nine assists. Led by a two-goal, two-assist game against Wales, Riley Lasda finished the Games with nine goals and six assists.
The next FIL World Cup will be in 2018 in Manchester, England.