Taking A Look At Teams 11-15: Avon Old Farms, Boys’ Latin, Brunswick, Gonzaga, Victor

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Monday marked the release of Recruiting Rundown’s Top 25 HS rankings, with Culver (Ind.) taking the top honor. Hill Academy (Ont.), McDonogh (Md.), Darien (Conn.) and Deerfield (Mass.) rounding out the top five. Head below for quick previews for teams 11 through 15, and check out yesterday’s breakdown of teams 6 through 10.

11. Avon Old Farms (Conn.)
2016 record: 8-7
Head coach: Skip Flanagan

Dropping their last six contests, the Winged Beavers struggled last season but should enter the spring as one of the favorites in New England with a ton of new talent. Postgrads like Colorado native Connor Fox (Brown) and Georgia product Raines Shamburger (Duke) will boost the attack and defense, respectively. In addition, the addition of attackman Darian Cook (UMass), face-off man Zac Tucci (Harvard) and middie George Pike (Maryland) helps tremendously. Top 100 players Ryan Lanchbury (Richmond) and Owen McElroy (Georgetown) are two of the best in country at attack and goalie, providing important senior leadership in what should be a strong year for Avon.

12. Boys’ Latin (Md.)
2016 record: 14-4
Head coach: Brian Farrell

Though they graduated two Under Armour All-Americans among three starters lost, the Lakers have to like their chances in their second year under former Laker standout Brian Farrell. A formidable 1-2 punch on attack exists between captain Luke Shilling (Hopkins) and No. 43 junior Matt Brandau, a Yale recruit. BL will have the ball plenty as they bring back arguably the best FOGO in the league in Penn State recruit Jake Glatz, while seniors Greg Ey (Penn State) and Koby Russell (High Point) should do damage from the midfield. The Lakers are expected to run a zone defense once again, backstopped by new starter Chris Brandau, a junior committed to Georgetown.

13. Brunswick (Conn.)
2016 record: 15-3
Head coach: David Bruce

Carrying a whopping 17 recruits bound for Division I, the Bruins are loaded with impact players at just about every position. Lefty scorer Alex Buckanavage, a Michigan recruit who is the No. 24 senior in the country, leads an incredibly talented attack unit that will also feature junior standouts Xander Dickson (Virginia) and Griffin Gelinas (Michigan). In addition, seniors Sean Morris (North Carolina) and John Fox (Virginia) make up a deep midfield corps. There’s a strong 1-2 punch on the backline between senior Max Metalios (Penn) and No. 8 junior Wilson Stephenson (Duke), while junior Patrick Burkinshaw (Virginia) will likely take over starting duties between the pipes.

14. Gonzaga (D.C.)
2016 record: 19-2
Head coach: Casey O’Neill

The boys in purple graduated more starters than any other Top 25 squad, but there’s enough off off a core to win an eighth straight WCAC title and find success against another daunting schedule. Ranked as the No. 3 player in his class, Harvard recruit Jack Myers had a monster campaign a year ago as a sophomore and will be the focus of the offense from his spot at attack. He’ll work in tandem with captain Brendan Alt (Marquette), while speedy senior Brian Townsend (Penn State) is expected to draw a lot of attention from opponents. Finding replacements at the face-off X and in goal, but Virginia signee Will Rock will lead a rebuilt defense that has plenty of talent waiting in the wings.

15. Victor (N.Y.)
2016 record: 22-0
Head coach: Jim Andre

The Blue Devils also lost a ton to graduation in the offseason, and may experience some growing pains in the early weeks. There’s just one Division I bound player in the senior class, so the onus is on underclassmen returning starters like junior goalie Chayse Ierlan (Cornell) and athletic No. 42 junior Andrew Russell (Virginia) to lead the way. Classmates that are expected to have increased roles are middies Mitch Cain (Loyola) and Alex Mabbett (Hopkins), while Tanner Hay (Albany) finished very strong as a standout defenseman a year ago. With two undefeated state championship seasons in a row, Victor will bump down to Class B after a year with the A’s, but will still be considered the overwhelming favorite in the Rochester area.

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