BOSTON – In just his first outing with Major League Lacrosse’s Denver Outlaws, former VMI lacrosse standout Stephen Robarge was named Cascade Rookie of the Week after having a breakout game against the Long Island Lizards.
Robarge, who is set to graduate from VMI on Wednesday, played in his first career MLL game for the Outlaws. A face-off specialist, Robarge won 17 of his 30 draws in that game, helping lead Denver to a 19-11 win over the visiting Lizards, improving the Outlaws to 3-0 on the young season.
In his debut, Robarge, who has been the NCAA’s top groundball getter the last two seasons, collected four groundballs while winning eight of his 13 first-half draws. Robarge earned the Outlaws an advantage on faceoffs against Long Island faceoff specialist Greg Gurenlian, who entered the game with an MLL-best .760 faceoff winning percentage. Gurenlian also lead the league in face-offs last year prior to his season-ending injury.
Through three weeks of play, Robarge’s 17-of-30 (.567) faceoff performance ranks fourth in the league among players with five-or-more faceoff attempts.
The Lorton, Va. native becomes the first former VMI player to play in the MLL after being drafted 44th by the Outlaws. Denver is coached by Jim Stagnitta, who has ties to Lexington, having served as the head man at neighboring Washington & Lee from 1990 through 2001.
Robarge, who was the first two-time Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Face-off Specialist of the Year, is in elite company in the annals of VMI athletic history, becoming just the second athlete to play in the pro ranks while still a member of the VMI Corps of Cadets. He joins Mike Roberts, a former catcher on the VMI baseball team, who is currently playing in the Milwaukee Brewers farm system.
The Outlaws return to action on May 19 when the host the defending champion Boston Cannons at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Game time is set for 9 p.m. EST
Portions of this release courtesy of the Denver Outlaws and Major League Lacrosse.