Atlas LC 19 Man Roster

What Atlas LC’s 19-man Roster Moves Mean for the Club

By Lauren Merola

Jun 2, 2023

Atlas LC made its first round of training-camp cuts after releasing midfielders Zak Lanoue and Quinn McCahon, attackman Kyle Long and goalie JD Colarusso to the Player Pool on Tuesday. The club then decided on its 19-man, Week 1 rosters.

Here’s what to follow:

Welcome to the Atlas Buffet

They were draft picks well used for Atlas coach Mike Pressler. Rookies Gavin Adler, Brett Makar and Xander Dickson – Atlas’ first three draft picks, Nos. 1, 3 and 11, respectively – all made the 19-man roster. 

Atlas LC claimed Chet Comizio off waivers this offseason, and he too will make his Premier Lacrosse League and Atlas debut on Saturday.

It doesn’t take long to know that on Atlas, everybody eats. Welcome to the buffet, rookies.

Rewriting the Past

Atlas cut goalie Drake Porter and attackman Marc O’Rourke at training camp last year. It’s a different story this year – especially after Atlas released Colarusso, basically solidifying Porter’s spot in the lineup as at least the backup.

Porter was cut last May but invited to the 2023 Championship Series in February. In one game played there, Porter made eight saves on 57 percent. 

Atlas’ veteran starting goalie Jack Concannon spent the past two months on the injured list and was moved back to the active roster just in time for training camp on May 23. When healthy, Concannon is a thief from short range. He leads the league in doorstep saves and was second in the league in save percentage (54.8) in 2022. 

As Atlas coach Mike Pressler said, all positions are “up in the air” during training camp, giving Porter a chance to compete, but Concannon is likely to start in goal Week 1.

O’Rourke’s possibility of sniping a starting spot is also unlikely. Atlas’ attack last season consisted of Jeff Teat, Chris Gray and captain Eric Law. They’ll all still get their minutes this year, even if Law finds some time split with Dickson. 

“For Teat and Gray to have somebody like Lawsie (Law) and Dickson in there that know how to play off-ball and find those pockets, I think Dickson can come in and fit in right away on our offensive side,” Pressler said on May 15.

Still, O’Rourke impressed Atlas offensive coordinator Steven Brooks, who was the interim head coach during the Championship Series, and Pressler, who coached O’Rourke at Bryant from 2018-2022, enough to earn a one-year contract after the Championship Series.

Both Porter and O’Rourke are dressing in Atlas’ season opener.

Atlas LC Releases

Atlas drafted Long on May 9 and picked up McMahon and Lanou off waivers shortly thereafter. Long is the most surprising name to be cut from Atlas, as many thought grabbing him with the No. 27 pick was a steal.

“We all agreed we needed a different type of midfielder,” Pressler said on his draft-day thought process on May 15. “We’re very strong at those downhill, one-on-one dodgers who can create for their own. We needed off-ball guys. We addressed that without question with Xander Dickson and, hopefully, Kyle Long.”

Long scored 54 goals, adding 94 assists and 47 ground balls in his graduate season at Maryland. His release caters less to his ability and more to the roster size allowed per team by the PLL (19) and to Atlas’ offensive depth, especially after addressing the “off-ball” player need with Dickson.

Atlas LC Training Camp Battles

That’s right. Training camp battles aren’t over until they’re over, and the winners emerge Saturday.

The 19 active players have days to secure their spot in the starting lineup. The main battle is happening down low between Tucker Durkin, Michael Rexrode, Adler and Makar. 

Durkin, the veteran captain, could easily end up with Adler and Makar on the starting defense, taking them under his wing.

“​​Makar and Adler are going to be great mentees to Tucker Durkin,” Pressler said on May 15. “He’s at the end of his career; he’s in the fourth quarter. He has two incredible men to mentor here.”

The Bulls face the Redwoods on June 3 in Albany.

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