Trevor Baptiste

Trevor Baptiste leaves Atlas’ win over Redwoods with injury

By Lauren Merola | Jun 16, 2024

New York Atlas faceoff specialist Trevor Baptiste was ruled out toward the end of Sunday’s 20-15 victory over the California Redwoods.

Head coach and general manager Mike Pressler had no update on Baptiste postgame, saying he let the medical team attend to Baptiste during the game and that he would talk to his league-leading faceoff man before the team departs Philadelphia.

Before exiting, Baptiste won 12 of 29 faceoffs (41%) in his worst showing — by eight wins — this season. He also grabbed a season-low six ground balls against his toughest test in 2024: TD Ierlan.

Baptiste leads the PLL with a 73% win percentage, nabbing 77 of 106 faceoffs in four games so far this season. He’s a four-time PLL Faceoff Athlete of the Year and was the Jim Brown Most Valuable Player in 2022.

If Baptiste is unable to dress for the Atlas’ next game against the Maryland Whipsnakes, Pressler said he would look to dress another faceoff specialist in his place as opposed to playing a midfielder or short-stick defensive midfielder at the stripe, like how the Philadelphia Waterdogs have done this season.

Peyton Smith would likely be activated in Baptiste’s place. The 26-year-old faceoff specialist has not played a game for New York since he was picked up by the team in 2023. Out of Marist, Smith played six games for the Redwoods in 2020, going 25-for-66 (38%). He played one game for the Woods in 2021.

“We have to have a faceoff guy. We have the best in the world right now,” Pressler said. “If for some reason Trevor is not ready, then we have to think about what’s next and figure out a way to make a change there.

“We want to continue facing off, and we want to continue facing off with No. 9 in particular.”

With a league-wide bye week upcoming, Baptiste has two weeks to rehab any potential injury sustained.

“He’ll be ready,” Myles Jones said postgame.