Ryan McClernan, the founder of the Baltimore Crabs and B’More Lax Co. hosted another outstanding day of lacrosse on two fields at Boys’ Latin, giving college coaches the opportunity to get great reads on 10 different teams. Seven 2017 squads and three 2018 squads made the trip and got to experience some surprisingly comfortable weather to end the fall, and it was the perfect opportunity for me to get updated looks at some sophomores for the first time since the summer. Schools like Loyola, Georgetown, North Carolina, Michigan, Johns Hopkins, Denver, Princeton, Villanova, Towson and a few others stopped by.
For a look at the participants and schedule, check out this link. I focused mostly on 2017’s but sprinkled in some freshmen as well – here are 20 players who impressed, as well as several more shoutouts for recruits who stood out:
Thomas Berger ’17, M, Leading Edge / Chatham (N.J.) – To put it simply, this Loyola recruit is insanely talented and demonstrated that just a few miles up the road from his future college home. Berger is very polished with either hand so much that it’s hard to tell what his strong hand is and creates a boatload of separation with his hitch move or split dodge. I clearly undervalued him as the No. 66 sophomore – it’s almost as if he knew that he had something more to prove and kept filling up the nets whenever I was on the sidelines.
John Nostrant ’17, M, Mesa Fresh / Haverford (Pa.) – It’s fairly easy to tell that he’s the son of one of the more renowned high school coaches in the land, as Nostrant’s IQ is off the charts. He’s calm, cool and collected from up top, showing off his prowess in the man-up but also in transition opportunities, where he’s especially impressive. The Penn State-bound sophomore is a great shooter with either hand but is also just as awesome off ball.
Corey McManus ’17, A, Leading Edge / Summit (N.J.) – The thick lefty boosted his status with college with a few excellent outings on Sunday afternoon. He’s a volume shooter but opportunistic at the same time, thriving on the wing and getting to the cage by bullying and besting his man. Multi-goal performances came to be a habit for him despite slow feet, though he has enough intriguing attributes that he’d be a very nice mid-level Division I standout.
Anthony Orsini ’17, A/M, Baltimore Crabs / Middletown (Md.) – An imposing, wide-bodied prospect who moves deftly off-ball, Orsini was fantastic in Sunday’s opener, single-handedly pushing the Crabs to their comeback win over a loaded Eclipse squad. He scored four goals in the half and all at big moments. Moving down to attack from his natural midfield position, he posted up on the left wing and let it go on the EMO or with time and room during all-even situations. Has a quick release on his shot and is a bear when scooping up groundballs.
Grayson Sallade ’18, M, Duke’s LC / Manheim Township (Pa.) – Are you getting tired about reading about this recruit yet? Sallade has killed it at every event he’s attended this fall, which is why he essentially has his pick of any top program in the country, though he’ll likely take his time. He’s a steady force with the ball in his hands, slinging it with either hand with a rapid release, accuracy and velocity. In other words, when Sallade’s hands are free, the goalie’s only move is to turn, rake and give the ball back to the referee. I also love how he hustles everywhere on the field and is sideline to sideline making plays on O and D.
Josh Rotman ’17, M, 3d National / Sharon (Mass.) – Having watched him extensively back at 3d Blue Chip in January, I already liked the tools that Rotman has in his game. It appears that he has continued to thrive with his left hand, getting to the cage even though it wasn’t always pretty. He is a workhorse of sorts, demonstrating a prowess between the lines and in transition. Continuing to touch up his stick work will be vital for his development, but he’s a great two-way middie who deserves some enhanced college looks.
B.J. Farrare ’18, M, Baltimore Crabs / McDonogh (Md.) – There’s a reason that Farrare was on the Eagles’ MIAA championship football team as a freshman. He’s athletic as they come (I’d imagine his 40-yard dash time is sick) and can run all day with poise and sound decision-making. Farrare is able to lock down his man from up top even though he’s not particularly big by any means, but can also make the right looks in transition or fire one in on the run.
Kyle Prouty ’17, F/O, Leading Edge / New Egypt (N.J.) – I have to commend this kid for carrying over his momentum gained from winning the Philly Showcase ‘King of the X’ crown last weekend. He’s extremely automatic, winning the clamp or out-grinding his opponent in scrums but always acting as the catalyst for LE’s offense. Most impressively, he’s not a liability on either end of the field. Currently deciding between Princeton, Notre Dame and Villanova, among others.
Jake Tomsik ’17, A, 3d National / Phillips Andover (Mass.) – It was my first time really watching the Georgetown commit and I came away super impressed with everything that he brings to the table. He’s like a lot of New England attackmen – slightly short in stature, hard-nosed, ballsy and quick, blowing by his man behind the cage and getting in front of the cage for a dive goal or an easy feed. Does a nice job protecting his stick and limiting turnovers, hustling while riding as well.
Charlie Olmert ’17, M, Baltimore Crabs / Severn (Md.) – I’m highly impressed with just how complete the Ivy League verbal looks to be at this early point. Olmert goes as hard as anybody when the ball is on the ground in contested situations, but is more known for cruising down the alley and getting his hands free without much trouble. A lot of kids can get lazy when they’ve achieved high honors like being the No. 20 player in the class, but it’s obvious that Olmert is a hard worker who continues to improve his shot and all facets of his promising skill set.
Matthew Lane ’18, LSM/D, Duke’s LC / Lancaster Country Day (Pa.) – Possessing phenomenal wheels in transition, the star soccer player (he’s said to be one of the top freshman scorers in the entire state) is a standout longpole with room to grow into his body and develop 1-on-1 defensive skills. When the ball was on the ground, it was usually Lane that was picking it up and making the right decision. He does a good job of putting his stick in the passing lanes and wreaking havoc, showing a knack for taking the ball into the offensive zone.
Aleric Fyock ’18, G, Baltimore Crabs / St. Mary’s (Md.) – A recent verbal to Penn State, Fyock has all of the makings of a special high school goalie. His size jumps off the page initially then you notice just how many tough stops he makes and controls due to awesome hands and polished technique. He was the catalyst to a big day for the Crabs, leading their transition game and making some acrobatic and downright impressive stops all over the place. I’d say he has a good bit of upside and will likely be a three-year starter for Ben Rubeor’s Saints.
Griffin Harris ’17, A/M, 3d National / Governor’s (Mass.) – It was a pleasure watching Harris, who seems to have recovered from a torn ACL that caused him to miss much of the summer. Bound for UVA, he’s a slick player with insane stick skills, clear versatility and athleticism & speed that didn’t get limited by his knee brace. On one play, he had a nasty Indian pickup and put in a rebound, drawing raised eyebrows from the coaches on the sidelines. Looking forward to seeing what Harris does with the amount of potential he has, as it’s clear he’ll be an impact player for years to come.
Jackson Appelt ’17, A, Eclipse / New Canaan (Conn.) – Another bound for Dom Starsia’s program in Charlottesville, Appelt is a poised and crafty player at X, throwing nice fakes and often dodging to feed his cutting teammates. His feet are absurdly quick, allowing him to turn on a dime when going to the rack. Fairfield County kids have sometimes been accused of being soft – Appelt is just the opposite, brushing off stick checks like they’re nothing. Fun player to watch for sure.
Andrew Bonafede ’18, G, LI Express / Chaminade (N.Y.) – With a brother at Princeton and a sister headed to Duke in the fall, Bonafede is the next family member who looks destined for lacrosse stardom at the high school level. He’s as consistent as any keeper on the recruiting trail, using lightning quick hands to eat up shots from all planes and angles then instantly getting the ball upfield with a pinpoint clearing pass. It’s early, but Bonafede is hands down a top three goalie in the freshman class.
Kyle Salvatore ’17, M, Eclipse / Taft (Conn.) – This Ivy League verbal was lights out for the most part, tallying some nasty goals throughout Sunday’s games to lead a stellar Eclipse offense. He has a powerful snap on outside shots with his feet set and is money in the bank from long range, taking his game to another level since the summer. In one game, Salvatore had the eventual game-winner on an invert after a huge GB off of the wing (if I remember correctly).
David Parsons, LSM/D, 3d National / Hotchkiss (Conn.)
Jack Calderone, LSM/D, 3d National/ Cherry Creek (Colo.)
Jackson Caputo, LSM/D, 3d National / Deerfield (Mass.) – It’s only fair to collectively highlight the three defensemen on Jamie Munro’s 3d squad who impressed me the most, as all three looked to be on the same level for the most part. Parsons is fantastic off-ball, keeping his head on a swivel while also executing proper lifts around GLE, staying heavy on the hands and using his body often. Though he may have gone for too many home run checks at times, I liked how Calderone is a flashy takeaway defender with a great stick, often carrying the ball with confidence over the midline. Caputo is fundamentally sound with a great handle, standout size and noticeable understanding of the IQ side of defense.
Sean Morris ’17, M, Eclipse / Brunswick (Conn.) – Can definitely see why Joe Breschi’s Tar Heels took this athlete so early. Yet another stud out of the Brunswick School in Greenwich (I feel like I’ve written up a ton of Bruins this fall), he’s a shutdown defender with his shortstick who can also let it go from long range when dodging his man. He’s reliable on the offensive end but I was perhaps more intrigued with his ability to force some bad shots on great offensive midfielders when D’ing them up. Will be watching him closely this spring and beyond.
OTHERS WHO IMPRESSED
Colin Munro ’17, A, 3d National / Mountain Vista (Colo.)
Schuyler Blair ’17, A, 3d National / Ridgefield (Conn.)
Griffin Gharity ’17, M, 3d National / Cherry Creek (Colo.)
Mason Ostroski ’17, M, 3d National / St. Mary’s (Md.)
Jack Myers ’18, A, Baltimore Crabs / Gonzaga (D.C.)
Christopher Cabral ’18, M/FO, Baltimore Crabs / St. Paul’s (Md.)
Michael Ubriaco ’18, LSM, Baltimore Crabs / Boys’ Latin (Md.)
Robert Olsen ’18, M, Baltimore Crabs / Loyola Blakefield (Md.)
Matt Brandau ’18, A, Baltimore Crabs / Boys’ Latin (Md.)
Zack Nelson ’18, A, Duke’s LC / Central Catholic (Pa.)
Caton Johnson ’18, G, Duke’s LC / Manheim Township (Pa.)
Matt Clibanoff ’18, A, Duke’s LC / La Salle (Pa.)
Luke Summers ’18, M, Duke’s LC / Central Catholic (Pa.)
Liam Belhumeuer ’17, A, Eclipse / Fox Lane (N.Y.)
Corey Millhouse ’17, M, Eclipse / Hamden (Conn.)
Jimmy Heidt ’17, A, Eclipse / Brunswick (Conn.)
James Crovatto ’17, Eclipse / New Canaan (Conn.)
Andrew Bauersfeld ’17, Eclipse / New Canaan (Conn.)
Ollie Abramson ’17, G, Greene Turtle / McDonogh (Md.)
Will Kusnierek ’18, A/M, LI Express / Chaminade (N.Y.)
J.P. Lannig ’18, A, LI Express / Syosset (N.Y.)
Matthew Russo ’18, M, LI Express / Smithtown East (N.Y.)
Brady Keneally ’18, D, LI Express / St. Anthony’s (N.Y.)
Michael Zichelli ’17, M, API Select / Severna Park (Md.)
Steven Zichelli ’17, M, API Select / Severna Park (Md.)
Billy Coyle ’17, A, Mesa Fresh / Malvern Prep (Pa.)
Billy Holmes ’17, D, Mesa Fresh / Haverford (Pa.)
Joel Trucksess ’17, F/O, Mesa Fresh / Germantown Academy (Pa.)
Mac Updike ’17, M, Mesa Fresh / Malvern Prep (Pa.)
Jack Parr ’17, A, Baltimore Crabs / McDonogh (Md.)
Evan Riss ’17, A, Baltimore Crabs / Oakland Mills (Md.)
Luke Shilling ’17, A, Baltimore Crabs / Boys’ Latin (Md.)
Kyle Dombroski ’17, D, Leading Edge / Westfield (N.J.)
Shane Dougherty ’17, A/M, Leading Edge / Morris Knolls (N.J.)
Jared Reinson ’17, D, Leading Edge / Montgomery (N.J.)
Owen McElroy ’17, G Leading Edge / Avon Old Farms (Conn.)
Kevin Gill ’17, M, Leading Edge / Morristown-Beard (N.J.)