11/20/2019 12:05 PM
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Three hundred and thirty-nine college coaches in one weekend.
Seems pretty ideal, right? The My Lacrosse Tournaments Fall Classic Weekend, coupled with the National Lacrosse Federation's Uncommitted Showcase and Fall Invitational, brought out the most college coaches to one place... ever. College coaches from all levels swarmed to Farmingdale State to see the best talent in the country. The Spotlight Showcase kicked off the festivities on Friday, while the rest of the weekend included competition in the Fall Classic Open bracket and Sunday's high school invitational.
It's impossible to highlight every worthy player from such a massive event, but here's a breakdown of some of the players who left a major impression.
Tysen Lindsey, midfield, Sheldon (Ore.) / MadLax Oregon
A big, put-together midfielder, Lindsey had deceptively good feet and guys going up against him seemed surprised at how easily he could get by them. He did a terrific job of dodging hard and drawing slides, and he routinely made smart, heady passes to get his teammates involved. He chipped in two assists and a caused turnover.
Devin O'Sullivan, attack, Chaminade (N.Y.) / Long Island Express
O'Sullivan was the offensive star of the show, bagging five goals on just seven shots as he made the most of his opportunities. A slick, shifty goal scorer, he showed an excellent handle in tight, great hands and quick feet, and defenders really struggled to stay in front of him.
Deven Rauss, LSM, Ward Melville (N.Y.) / Team 91 Ambush
Rauss kicked off a good Fall Classic weekend with an excellent performance in the Spotlight Showcase. He had a particularly impressive goal when he unloaded a rip off of a pass, and his excellent stick makes him a natural fit for the LSM spot. He did a nice job of getting out on guys and steering them to the perimeter and he collected a trio of ground balls, too.
Mac Rodriguez, faceoff midfield, Chaminade (N.Y.) / Team 91 Blaze - Yale
It's hard to dream up a better stat line for a faceoff man than the one Rodriguez put up. He was a perfect 16-for-16 at the faceoff dot, collecting ground balls on 11 of them, and he scored three times on four shots. The future Bulldog also added a trio of assists and his combination of hand speed, lacrosse IQ and athleticism was simply too much for anyone who lined up opposite of him.
Trey Berry, attack, Chaminade (N.Y.) / Team 91 Ambush
Damian Levin, goalie, Hauppauge (N.Y.) / Long Island Outlaws
Ryan McCarthy, attack, Northport (N.Y.) / Team 91 Ambush
Connor Richardson, attack, Half Hollow Hills East (N.Y.) / Igloo
Logan Schanars, defense, Half Hollow Hills East (N.Y.) / Team 91 Ambush
Danny Zabbia, attack, Half Hollow Hills West (N.Y.) / Team 91 Ambush
Aaron Cho, attack, Herricks (N.Y.) / Legacy
A slick, shifty X attackman, Cho is a threat to scoee with either hand. He was in control of the offense and showcased good vision and the ability to consistently beat his man to draw a slide, and he finished with a goal, two assists, two ground balls and two caused turnovers.
Jack Halpin, LSM, Bellport (N.Y.) / United
Halpin only first picked up a pole about five months ago, but he's been an incredibly quick study. The former short-stick midfielder was a beast all over the field, collecting four ground balls, causing a turnover and dusting guys in the open field in transition. The starting quarterback for Bellport football as a sophomore, Halpin has ridiculous potential and he showed elite-level athleticism, too.
James Tyras, defense, Chaminade (N.Y.) / Legacy
Another defenseman straight out of Chaminade central casting, Tyras has the size and brains to be a disruptive force on the back end. A strong, physical player who throws smart, accurate checks, he is always in control, and he even found the time to add a pair of goals at the other end.
Carson Healy, faceoff midfield, Chaminade (N.Y.) / True Blue
Tyler Burns, midfield, Howell (N.J.) / Team 91 New Jersey
Jack Ponzio, attack, Connetquot (N.Y.) / Team 91 Bandits
From the looks of it, it'd be safe to expect Ponzio to be one of the most sought-after recruits in the '23 class. The lefty did whatever he wanted, however he wanted, whenever he wanted, on the way to a five-goal, two-assist, one-ground ball performance. He does a great job of getting his hands free once he gets going downhill, and he's got an excellent stick. He did some of his best work from atop the cage, sweeping top side and hammering shots home.
PJ Verdi, goalie, Chaminade (N.Y.) / Long Island Express
It's no surprise to see yet another great goalie from the Chaminade pipeline, and Verdi looks the part of a future star. He was excellent throughout the night, stopping nine shots, many of high difficulty. He's a big goalie who takes up a good part of the net, but he's got the feet and athleticism of a smaller goalie.
Michael Fagen, midfield, Lynnbrook (N.Y.) / Long Island Express
Aidan Lough, midfield, Chaminade (N.Y.) / Long Island Express
Fall Classic Standouts
Chris Arceri '20, faceoff midfield, Smithtown East (N.Y.) - Penn
Already touted as one of the top faceoff men in the '20 class, Arceri continued his upward ascent, and it's clear that he's put in some time in improving his stickwork. He won more than his fair share of faceoffs, but his most impressive trait was his willingness and ability to go to the cage hard off of dodges and make good decisions with the ball in his stick.
Brock Behrman '22, attack, Niskayuna (N.Y.) / Team 91 Smash
A quick, speedy, agile dynamo who can break down even the best of defensemen, Behrman has next level change-of-direction ability, and it's fair to wonder if it's even worth it to go guard him at X. He is so shifty that he can leave guys reaching for air, and he's got the shooting ability and handle to finish in tight.
Mikey Beil '20, midfield, Port Washington (N.Y.) - Fairfield
A big, athletic midfielder, Beil left his mark with a very heavy shot and the ability to gain a great deal of separation with his dodges. He was particularly good against Yorktown, and he has the potential to be an excellent offensive midfielder at the next level.
Matt Collison '22, midfield, St. Michael's (Ont.) / Edge
Collison has an outstanding stick and tremendous body control in tight spaces. He uses his size to bully his way to his spot and from there, he has the handle to finish everything in tight. He does an outstanding job of creating the slightest bit of separation, and he had a couple of impressive goals on the day.
Jake D'Andrea '21, goalie, Newtown (Conn.) / Team 91 Tristate Select
D'Andrea looked the part of a very solid Division I goalie with how he made big-time saves and dropping dimes to spark transition. He's adventurous outside of the cage, but he does so with plenty of poise and savvy. There's no such thing as a gimme goal with him, as he ripped off some major highlight reel saves.
Sam Ferrel '21, midfield, Jordan (N.C.) / Team 91 Carolina
It doesn't take long to notice Ferrell's compete level, since his motor is always going and he's happy to mix it up in any situation. He did a good job offensively as perhaps Team 91 Carolina's best offensive player, getting down the alley and scoring, particularly when he went lefty. He also showed a nice touch around the cage with some goals inside.
Owen Gaffney '21, midfield, Loyola (Calif.) / West Coast Starz - Harvard
An ambidextrous shooter, Gaffney did pretty much whatever he wanted to do on Saturday. He scored both lefty and righty, using a quick and stealthy release to fool goalies, and he's got a deep bag of tricks off the dodge and he has a knack for making smart passes. He's an elite competitor, too. If something goes wrong for the Starz, he's the first to get back and try to get the ball back.
Collin Krieg '20, goalie, Ward Melville (N.Y.) - North Carolina
Krieg looked every bit the elite goalie that he is in helping Patriot Elite Green to a championship. He did an excellent job of taking away everything low, but he's also got the hand speed to get to high shots. He's in total command of the defense and has outstanding footwork, and he's all too willing to venture out of the cage on clear and found himself on the other side of the 50 on a few occasions.
Chase Mahabir '21, midfield, Midland (Mich.) / Cherries
A big, strong dodger who gets to the middle of the field with relative ease, Mahabir showed off a hard, powerful shot that splashed into twine with regularity over the weekend. Also a middle linebacker on a strong Midland team, he plays with that same mentality and brings a ton of toughness to the position.
Bode Maurer '21, attack, Juanita (Wash.) / West Coast Starz - Towson
Maurer absolutely LOVES the ride. He's excellent at angling off ball carriers and getting the ball back for the Starz. That mentality allows him to get several extra possessions throughout the game, and it also symbolizes who he is as an attackman. He is tough and gets to the dirty areas to make plays.
Joey Spallina '22, attack, Mount Sinai (N.Y.)
Spallina had a big hand in helping Mount Sinai reach the HS Invitational title game. He's such a known commodity at this point that he's expected to dominate every time out, but he usually finds a way to still produce at an astronomical rate. He has a beyond-his-years lacrosse IQ and an elite-plus stick, and he is so good at finding open teammates, even when they might not even see how he's going to get a pass off. There isn't a shot he won't try, and when you think you've predicted his next shot, he comes up with something different.
Logan Tucker '20, attack, Massapequa (N.Y.) - Albany
One college coach called Tucker, "the best kid there on Sunday," as the future Great Dane was filling up the back of the net with ease for the Chiefs. He does an excellent job of getting his teammates involved and was particularly good in a chippy game with Everest Academy. Tucker absolutely does not lack for confidence and swagger, and that's the type of mentality that you need to be a great attackman.
Danny Zabbia '21, attack, Half Hollow Hills West (N.Y.) / Team 91 Ambush
There certainly aren't many guys who can just launch frozen ropes the way that Zabbia does. When he gets the ball in the shooter spot on the man-up, duck and head for cover, because odds are a rocket is headed your way. A big, physical attackman who embraces contact on his dodges, he can also do damage around the crease, but he's really at his best with time and room.
Erich Acton '22, attack, Uxbridge (Ont.) / Edge
Lake Baker '21, faceoff midfield, Coronado (Nev.) / West Coast Starz - Penn State
Christian Daniels '21, defense, Middle Creek (N.C.) / Team 91 Carolina
Johnny Esposito '22, midfield/attack, Hackley (N.Y.)
Curren Johnson '22, attack, Bellport (N.Y.) / United
Russ Maher '20, attack, Mount Sinai (N.Y.) - Virginia
Eoghan Mullett '21, defense, Forest Hills Eastern (Mich.) / Cherries
Jack Neiland '21, midfield, Walt Whitman (N.Y.) / Team 91 Ambush
Mikey Trepeta '22, defense, Mount Sinai (N.Y.) / Team 91 Smash