Oct 3, 2018

DorHlqOV4AEiW9V.jpg(October 3, 2018)… The Rochester Knighthawks have re-signed assistant coach Marshall Abrams to a two-year deal. The former Knighthawks standout joined the staff last season and helped Rochester advance to the National Lacrosse League Finals.

“Last year was a lot of fun. I got to work with a great group of guys,” he said. “I am just excited to be back with the team. Thank you to Curt (Styres) for re-signing me.”

Prior to the start of the 2017-18 campaign, Abrams was an integral piece of Owner and General Manager Curt Styres’ plan to bolster his coaching staff, which also included bringing Mike Accursi on as an assistant coach. The duo transformed the offense into one of the best in the NLL, scoring 236 goals to finish third in the league.

“He is a really smart lacrosse mind and has been around the game for a long time,” said Accursi. “He has coached at many different levels and played at the highest level. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our team. It’s exciting to have him back.”

Abrams, who was an All-Pro defenseman during his playing days, brought a different perspective to his role as an offensive coach. Using his expertise, he was able to break down defenses and exploit goaltenders’ tendencies.

“It’s great to have ‘Marsh’ back. Not only does he have the experience of coaching Junior ‘A’ lacrosse, but he is a former Knighthawks player,” said Knighthawks VP of Player Personnel Jody Gage. “Marsh, although he is very quiet, he is very thoughtful and thinks things through. He has a great coaching mind and a winning pedigree, which he brought to our organization. The result was a surprising jump in our offense this past season.”

Marshall Abrams featured.jpgThe 40-year-old Abrams has been a winner his entire life, achieving success at the junior, collegiate, international and professional levels. His career took off at Syracuse University, where he played in four Final Fours and helped the Orange capture the 2000 Division I National Championship. The Onondaga Nation product was a three-time All-American and the 2000 Defenseman of the Year. 

Internationally, the defenseman won silver medals at back-to-back World Indoor Lacrosse Championships (2003, 2007). In 2007, he served as one of the alternate captains for the Iroquois Nationals.

The 2007 season was also one of his finest as a pro, as he was a member of one of the greatest teams in league history. Rochester won 17 straight games, which is still a league record, en route to an NLL championship. Abrams concluded his playing career with the Teal and Purple in 2010, finishing with seven goals, 40 assists, and 413 loose balls in 96 games.

He has experienced similar success as a coach, guiding the Six Nations Arrows to Minto Cup championships in 2007 and 2014. 

Styres, who believes success breeds success, brought Abrams into the fold and it produced a 10th trip to the Finals for the Knighthawks. 

“Every level Marshall has been involved with, there is a success story,” said Styres. “Success seems to follow him.”

After coming within one win of the franchise’s sixth NLL title, Abrams cannot wait to get back to work and build on last year’s deep playoff run.

“That year of experience should pay dividends going forward,” he said. “It’s not every year that you can go to the Finals. It’s a whole different level of play. This year helped our younger guys and our entire team grow. There were only a few veterans who had that type of big-game NLL experience. 

“That creates more hunger for the guys and gives them something to strive for (this season). You get that taste of playing in the Finals, and you want more."

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