Photos by Sean Carpenter and Scobel Wiggins –

Peter Woodside of the Portland Stags and Marques Brownlee of the New York Rumble have been named the Defensive Players of the Year for their respective conferences.

The Defensive Player of the Year awards are given to the most outstanding defensive player in each conference. This year’s recipients led their respective conferences in blocks, but were also valuable goal producers after the turn. Woodside and Brownlee stood out from the pack with their consistent defensive presence throughout the season. 

In the Western Conference, Peter Woodside, the 2015 Breakout Player of the Year, wins his second consecutive Defensive Player of the Year award. Woodside led the Western Conference in blocks this season with 19, surpassing his previous career high mark of 17 (2015), helping the Stags to the an appearance in the upcoming MLU Championship. The 6’4″ cutter from Dixie State College continued to be a potent threat after the turn in 2016, tallying 34 points (27 goals and 7 assists) despite playing 146 of his 166 points on defense.

In the Eastern Conference, third year veteran Marques Brownlee takes home the award after leading the league with 21 blocks. A 6’3″ cutter out of Steven’s Tech, Brownlee’s 21 blocks this season ties him for second place with Morgan Hibbert’s 2014 campaign for the single season blocks record, behind only Rob Baker’s 23 in 2013. With an additional 12 goals and 12 assists, Brownlee, like Woodside became a significant offensive threat after the turn, finishing 4th on the team in points despite playing most of his time on defense. 

Final Ballot:

Western Conference:

  1. Peter Woodside (PDX)
  2. Evan Klein (SEA)
  3. Cam Bailey (SEA)
  4. Topher Davis (PDX)
  5. Riley Meinershagen (PDX)

Others receiving votes (alphabetically): Graeme Barber (VAN), Nick Fiske (SF), Raphy Hayes (PDX), Nathan Lam (VAN), Devon Williams (SF)

Eastern Conference:

  1. Marques Brownlee (NY)
  2. Christian Foster (BOS)
  3. Charlie McCutcheon (PHL)
  4. Matt Esser (PHL)
  5. Greg Martin (PHL)

Others receiving votes (alphabetically): Sean Doherty (BOS), Ben Katz (BOS), Jibran Mieser (NY), Eric Miner (DC), Eric Stevens (BOS), Matt Weintraub (NY)