Minnesota retains promising young forward, also inks pair of defensemen
The Minnesota Swarm have announced that the team has agreed to one-year contracts with forward Scott Jones along with defensemen Jordan Houtby and Reid Acton for the upcoming 2015 National Lacrosse League season.
Jones, a first-round pick of the Swarm in the 2013 NLL Entry Draft (No. 7 overall), is set to return to Minnesota after collecting 21 points (6g, 15a) over 16 games in a promising rookie season. The 24-year-old from Port Coquitlam, British Columbia was one of the Swarm’s four first-round picks last season, which included F Logan Schuss (No. 1 overall), D Jason Noble (No. 2 overall) and T Cam Flint (No. 4 overall).
“We are excited to have Scott back for another year in Minnesota,” Swarm Owner and Governor John Arlotta said. “He showed great progress as a rookie and we are looking for him to take the next step in 2015 to become a full time contributor to the Swarm offense. He brings a great attitude and presence to our team both on and off the floor.”
A college standout at UMBC, Jones scored his first NLL goal in his second career game (Jan. 11 at Vancouver), and posted two or more points on seven different occasions this past season. The stocky right-hander is best known for his booming shot and his imposing physical presence in the offensive end. Measuring in at 6-foot-4 and 225-pounds, Jones was the biggest of all Swarm forwards in 2014.
Playing summer lacrosse, Jones is sitting in fourth on his team in offense, racking up 40 points (14g, 26a) in 16 games played. In his rookie season, Jones finished second in team scoring with 65 points (27g, 38a).
Houtby, at 22 years of age, was the youngest member of the Swarm’s active roster in 2014. The 6-foot-3, 180-pound defender out of Detroit-Mercy was picked up by Minnesota in the fourth-round (No. 29 overall) in 2013. Appearing in six games his rookie season, Houtby tallied a pair of assists while nabbing 15 loose balls and five forced turnovers.
“We are pleased to have Jordan back for the 2015 season,” added Arlotta. “He gained valuable NLL experience last season and has continued to grow as a player while playing summer lacrosse. We believe his recent success positions him well to compete for more playing time next season.”
A native of St. Catharines, Ontario, Houtby has played in 16 games of summer ball, picking up one goal and three assists in the process.
Acton, 25, was a Swarm third-round selection (No. 21 overall) in 2013. The 6-foot-3, 200-pound defenseman has spent the summer playing field lacrosse, where he has played alongside Noble and Swarm transition player David Earl. In 11 outdoor appearances, Acton has accumulated nine ground balls.
“We are very excited to sign Reid to a contract for the 2015 season,” said Arlotta. Although he was unable to join us last year due to job commitments, he is ready to go for the 2015 season and very anxious to get back on the floor. He is a talented defender who is known for his physical play, and he will fit the Swarm mold with his tough, unrelenting defense.”
The Toronto, Ontario native is a graduate of Loyola University, where he was a two-time All-American. During his career at Loyola, Acton helped the Greyhounds to three NCAA Championship appearances and a national title in 2012. His 53 caused turnovers are third-most in program history.
Each contract is pending league approval.
The 2014 NLL Entry Draft will take place on Monday, Sept. 22 in Oakville, Ontario.