Standouts From Big 4 Champions League

Becoming one of the most competitive and well attended club tournaments of the summer, Billy McKinney’s Philadelphia-based Big 4 program hosted an excellent collection of talent this weekend for his Champions League event. Games kicked off on Friday evening and ended on Sunday afternoon after a wild day of weather that affected the later games. Still, dozens of college coaches lined the fields at the sprawling campus of Germantown Academy for the action.

After a hard fought weekend, champions included Crabs 2021s, Looney’s 2020s, 3d New England 2019s and Big 4 HHH 2018’s. For a look at the bracket, standings and scoreboard, jump to Tourney Machine

Recruiting Rundown now has an Instagram account, so give it a follow to track the summer circuit between now and August. Our Twitter account can be found here.

Dylan Gergar ’18, A, Annapolis Hawks / Severn (Md.)
Putting up 73 goals this spring in the nation’s toughest league, Gergar is a player who has improved exponentially to the point that he’s likely one of the better 2018 attackmen in the Mid-Atlantic. The Lehigh commit was masterful in leading the Hawks to the championship game, consistently making plays as a slashing, ambidextrous dodger who showed up when it mattered most. Though undersized, Gergar didn’t shy away from contact and showed off excellent field sense as well as overall hustle, riding hard to the midline and frequently making things happen that way.

Quinn McCahon ’18, M, Big 4 HHH / Malvern Prep (Pa.)
Headed to UPenn, McCahon’s steadiness and ability to make the smart play just about every time was noticeable as the host Big 4 program captured a title over the weekend. He’s so good at drawing the slide and getting it off to an open teammate, but is of course just as lethal as a smooth and two-handed dodger who has an awesome shooting motion on the run. Also great defensively, McCahon does everything you ask of him and then some.

Declan McDermott ’18, M, Express North / Pleasantville (N.Y.)
Evan Zinn ’18, M, Express North / Staples (Conn.)
This pair of Top 100 juniors – bound for Georgetown and Hopkins, respectively – stood out once again this weekend with a bevy of big plays out of the midfield. Zinn (ranked 18th in the class) is a monster who routinely swept across the top for impressive shots but also showed the awareness to toss beautiful feeds to the doorstep for easy goals. McDermott, meanwhile, demonstrated a knack for getting his hands free, whether it was a hitch move at the top of the box, a nifty invert when covered by a shortstick or a stepdown.

Scott MacMillan ’18, G, Big 4 HHH / Conestoga (Pa.)
MacMillan played every minute of the weekend for the 2018 champs and was a driving factor behind their success. He’s not the biggest goalie around, but he makes up for it with great quickness, a command of his defense and an ability to make saves that he’s not supposed to make. He had an incredible point-blank denial in the semifinals and had a couple more impressive saves in the championship game. The uncommitted lefty has strong grades and will be a three-year starter at a Pennsylvania powerhouse, which should make him an appealing finishing piece to a team’s class. 

Owen McManus ’18, D, FCA Maryland / Friends (Md.)
It’s no surprise way the uncommitted McManus is gaining a lot of attention since excelling at the UA Baltimore tryouts a few weeks ago. Though he may not get the notoriety due to being in the MIAA ‘B’ Conference, it’s clear after watching a few full games that he deserves to be in the conversation as one of the better cover men in the state. He’s rangy with a great approach to ball carriers, blanketing a lot of established attackmen with nimble footwork but also acting as the field general off-ball. Saw him score a handful of goals in transition as well.

Will Abbott ’18, M, Fighting Clams / Hopkinton (Mass.)
The Quinnipiac commit was all over the field for the Clams, particularly on Sunday. He’s great on the faceoff wing, using his quickness and toughness to leverage his way to ground balls. He won’t shy away from getting his hands dirty by going to the tough areas to make plays and plays with an edge. If Abbott is on your team, you probably love him. If he’s not, there’s a good chance you don’t like him. 

Griffin Westlin ’18, A/M, Leading Edge / Seton Hall Prep (N.J.)
It wouldn’t be farfetched to say that Westlin was the most dominant rising senior at the event, dazzling with a variety of head-turning goals including an absurd fake jump shot that had his defenseman spinning before the Hopkins commit sent it home. A natural midfielder, Westlin had a ton of success playing attack (as he has in the past), demonstrating excellent stick and body control with a confident and heady dodging style that made hat tricks a regular occasion.  He’s got great range on his shot and was automatic in unsettled situations.

Quentin Buchman ’18, M, West Coast Starz / Santa Margarita Catholic (Calif.)
Ranked as the No. 73 player in the class and recently switching his verbal from Bryant to BU, Buchman has turned into quite the electrifying player. Armed with an elite first step, the SoCal native has a filthy split dodge and a cannon of a shot from multiple release points that was on display all weekend. He’s unbelievably crafty and made a killing exploiting shorties, having minimal trouble running by well known longpoles too. It’s safe to assume that he’ll make a nice climb up in the next Top 100 rankings.

Brendan Grimes ’20, A, Looney’s / Boys’ Latin (Md.)
The Ohio State commit started as a freshman for the Lakers, which is no small feat, and he carries himself with the confidence of a big-time scorer. The tall lefty sees the field well and is deadly when he’s on the righty wing and able to either find a teammate with a precise feed or let it fly. Grimes’ potential is through the roof, especially as he adds a little more bulk and finishes as a four-year starter at BL. 

Cole Herbert ’20, M, FCA Maryland / Calvert Hall (Md.)
Coming off of a solid season for the MIAA champs, Herbert was consistently impressive for FCA this past weekend. He’s big, athletic and incredibly poised, as he made dodging the alleys look easy and never seemed to take a bad shot. In a tight game against 91 Crush, he had four goals, doing a great job keeping his stick at his ear during his release to make it hard for the goalie to read.

Nick LiCalzi ’20, D, Team 91 Crush / South Side (N.Y.)
If the ball was near LiCalzi, it was ending up on the ground on Sunday. He must have had close to a half-dozen caused turnovers against FCA in the semis and a couple more against Looney’s in the final. LiCalzi has excellent size, but the Navy commit doesn’t exclusively rely on it to bully attackmen. Instead, he’s got the footwork to stick with almost anyone and his active stick makes him a nightmare matchup. Once LiCalzi gets the ball, he does a good job of starting transition and finding open guys for passes.

Dane Swanson ’20, M, Baltimore Crabs / McDonogh (Md.)
Due to his size at 6-3 or so, Swanson is usually the first person that you notice on the field. He’s much more than just a big kid though, as teams throw a lot at him and his production doesn’t fall off. The Navy verbal is such a force as a step-down shooter but has also taken his shot on the run to an even higher level after creating separation in his dodges.

Peter Callahan ’18, G, 3d New England / Avon Old Farms (Conn.) – Sacred Heart
Josh Coffman ’18, G, Annapolis Hawks / Severna Park (Md.) – Maryland
Taylor Bohanon ’18, A, Annapolis Hawks / St. Mary’s (Md.) – UMBC
Brett Hobbs ’18, A/M, Big 4 HHH / Salesianum (Del.) – Villanova
Grayson Sallade ’18, M, Big 4 HHH / Manheim Township (Pa.) – Virginia
Matt Dancscecs ’18, M, Blue Star / Roxbury (N.J.) – Rutgers
Mitchell Rothstein ’18, F/O, Blue Star / Haddonfield (N.J.) – Cornell
Will DeMuth ’18, M, FCA Maryland / Gilman (Md.)
Jack Dennehy ’18, A, LB3 / Harrison (Ga.) – Navy
Connor McCulloch ’18, A, Madlax / St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes (Va.)
Cole Kirst ’18, A, Leading Edge / Seton Hall Prep (N.J.)
Will Ciccarelli ’18, M, Mesa Fresh / Unionville (Pa.) – Providence
Matt Magnan ’18, M, Prime Time / Fox Lane (N.Y.) – Syracuse
George Greer ’18, M, SweetLax / Salisbury (Conn.)
Brody LaPorte ’18, LSM, West Coast Starz / Menlo (Calif.) – Villanova
Bear Lockshin ’19, M, 3d New England / Westminster (Conn.) – Princeton
Wilson Sands ’19, A, C2C / Highland Park (Tex.)
Christian Cechini ’19, A, Leading Edge / Apex (N.C.) – Penn State
Michael Gottlieb ’19, M, Prime Time / Brunswick (Conn.) – Boston U.
Dodson Piotrowski ’19, D, Madlax / South Lakes (Va.)
Taylor Musa ’19, A, Madlax / Riverside (Va.) – Colgate
Porter Hollen ’19, M, West Coast Starz / Torrey Pines (Calif.)
Jack Stuzin ’20, D, FCA Maryland / Gilman (Md.)
Jack Koras ’20, M, FCA Maryland / Loyola Blakefield (Md.) – Maryland
Cam Rubin ’20, A, Laxachusetts / Belmont Hill (Mass.) – Penn
Gable Braun ’20, F/O, Looney’s / McDonogh (Md.) – UNC
Jamie Grant ’20, G, Looney’s / St. Paul’s (Md.) – Marquette
Billy Spilman ’20, A/M, Baltimore Crabs / Gilman (Md.)
Xavier Arline ’20, A, Team 91 Crush / Shoreham-Wading River (N.Y.) – UNC
Chase LaDrido ’20, M, West Coast Starz / Bishop’s (Calif.) – Hopkins


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