John Grant Jr. and Casey Powell left an indelible mark on the Chesapeake Bayhawks’ 10-9 victory over the Charlotte Hounds in Sunday’s Major League Lacrosse final at PPL Park.
Grant scored four goals against No. 4 seed Charlotte and totaled six goals and one assist during championship weekend, earning the nod for Most Valuable Player. Powell chipped in one goal and two assists against the Hounds and finished with two goals and three assists in two playoff contests.
But the future of the Bayhawks attackmen is somewhat murky. Grant, who finished the regular season ranked third on the team in points with 32 (20 goals and 12 assists), sounded as if his return is not set in stone just yet.
“I just want to keep playing, and hopefully a team will want me,” he said.
Asked later how long he wanted to continue playing, Grant, 39, replied, “Until I’m completely useless, I’ll keep playing. When you get to be my age, it’s not in my control whether I’m playing. It’s going to be in the team’s control, but next summer is going to be a big one. Now I’m going to take some time off and get ready for the winter and see what happens.”
While Grant joined Drew Westervelt (John Carroll, UMBC) and Ben Rubeor (Loyola Blakefield) as starters, Powell, 37, was relegated to a reserve role after joining the team midway through the season. It was a task he had to learn to accept and grow comfortable with.
“I kind of had to pay my dues,” he said. “I’ve never not been on the man-up team and I’ve never not started, but it was nice to find a role amongst the team. The team accepted me and here we are, 2013 Major League Lacrosse champions.”
Powell said he too would like to return to Chesapeake, but he also said there is time to make that decision.
“I was telling the young guys that I probably only have another 10 years left in this league,” he said half-jokingly. “I don’t know. I’m just going to take it year by year. I tried to retire, but I’m glad I’m back. It’s great. It keeps me young. I love being around the guys. This is a first-class organization, and it’s great to be a champion.”