Standouts from Quaker Lax Fest

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Pearse Glavin knows that his is not a normal situation, and because of that, he appreciates what he’s been given that much more.

It’s not often that you can ask a high school sophomore what is the favorite place he’s visited and get the response, “it’s hard to pick, because there have been a little too many to count.” That’s not him bragging, either, because bragging isn’t Glavin’s style. That being said, when you’ve visited more than 50 countries and more than 100 cities before you can get your driver’s permit, you’re just a little different than everyone else.

“When I was in third grade, my whole family took the year off and went to live in Europe,” said Glavin, a 2020 attackman at The Haverford School (Pa.) and for the Rising Sons. “I guess I’d say my favorite was Vienna, Austria, because that’s where we used as a home base as we figured out where to travel. It was an unbelievable experience and I learned a lot about myself. I learned to communicate with others despite a language barrier and I think it helped develop my empathy for people.”

In eighth grade, Glavin had a similar experience when he got to visit all seven continents, including Antarctica. He fell in love with New Zealand because, “it doesn’t seem like it belongs to this world. It’s so pristine and almost untouched by civilization. There’s nothing like it in the U.S.” A trip to Cairo, Egypt gave him a new sense of perspective when he and his mom and cousin needed to have a caravan escort to get into the city because of the civil unrest in the Egyptian capital.

It’s not just about seeing the world, though. Glavin understands the position of privilege that he’s in, but he’s used it to enrich the lives of others. In Honduras, he visited the Amigos de Jesus children’s home, which takes in, “abandoned, abused and impoverished children with the hope of respecting and enhancing their spiritual, physical, emotional, social and intellectual growth within their country of origin,” and volunteered for a month. His family still sponsors a handful of children there and provide clothes and support for them.

“I think my trips have really given me a unique perspective and given me empathy, especially for those less fortunate,” Glavin said. “It’s important to give back to the people who need it. I was very lucky to be fortunate enough to have that experience, and it helped me understand different cultures. The best way to understand other cultures is to be immersed in them. The trips really taught me a lot and they gave me a set of skills that I can use throughout my life.”

Unsurprisingly, Glavin’s style as a person carries over to his lacrosse game. He’s an incredibly intelligent and cerebral lefty attackman who thrives on being the conductor of the Rising Sons’ offense. Glavin is great at finding open men, is good enough to beat his defender straight up and never short changes in the effort department. At last weekend’s Quaker Lax Fest, he helped the Sons to a 3-0 mark by running the offensive show and putting his teammates in a great position to succeed.

Put it this way: you know you’re decent when you’re on Haverford’s man-up as a freshman. Those jobs don’t come easily, but Glavin earned it with his steady play after some early freshman hiccups.

“I was almost like a fish out of water at first. I had to get accustomed to the speed, and I think after a while, the game definitely slowed down,” Glavin said. “I’ve definitely always been more of a quarterback type first. My mentality isn’t to score for myself, but to get everyone involved and help us get a win each time. I want to help everyone else perform to the best of their abilities.”

Both on and off the field.

A Look at Those Who Impressed at Quaker Lax Fest

Edward Arnold ‘19, LSM, Manhasset (N.Y.) / Long Island Express
It’s hard not to like this kid. He plays with an edge and controlled aggression, and he flashed a very active stick all day long. He gets right up on his assignment and doesn’t back down until the ball leaves the stick. A Penn commit, he even found the time to bury a BTB rebound on the doorstep in transition.

Aiden Blake ‘19, M, Haddonfield Memorial (N.J.) / Big 4 HHH  
Blake doesn’t really have one dominant trait, but he’s got a lot of very good ones. He looks the part of a big-time middie at around 6-2, 190 pounds or so, but he’s fluid when he runs. He was dusting guys in the open field, especially on one play where he had a punt return clear where he evaded four would-be defenders with an array of moves. When he got to the offensive side of the field, he was adept at finding open teammates with his passes.

Benjamin Branic ‘20, LSM, Paul VI (Va.) / VLC
Branic moves his feet well, and that gives him the confidence to guard just about anybody, anywhere. He looked just as comfortable up top as behind the net, successfully taking on Rising Sons middie Cade Szostek (Malvern Prep, Pa. / Penn State) at X. Branic also knocked down a couple passes, showed off his transition ability with a great scoop on a ground ball before dumping off to Ryan Kindel (Patriot, Va.) and also did a decent job on the wings.

Matt Chess ‘20, G, Episcopal Academy (Pa.) / Rising Sons
The more I watch Chess play, the more convinced I am that Episcopal Academy’s goaltending situation is going to be just fine. He’s not the athlete that teammate Nico Iacovino (Downingtown East, Pa.) is, but he’s an exceptionally-advanced communicator for his age. He captains the defense and is constantly scooping up ground balls near his cage. When Chess is in the cage, you’ll hear it. He’s gotten better as a stopper and throws dimes for outlet passes.

Jayce Dyer ‘19, M, Penn Charter (Pa.) / Phillie Elite
First off, big shoutout to Phillie Elite for the 76ers-themed jersey. I was hoping for a #TrustTheProcess somewhere on there, but at least it’s implied. Dyer had a very strong day on Sunday, flashing all over the field and seemingly never coming off. He ran the offensive sets well, was a valuable asset in the clearing game, took some wings and even chipped in offensively. He’s not the flashiest player, but he’s the type of middie that every team needs.

Gabriel Goforth ‘20, M, Bishop Shanahan (Pa.) / Freedom
The Maryland verbal just makes a couple of wow plays every game that make it easy to see why the Terps moved in on him so early. He’s tall and an exceptional athlete who can just run by everyone with ease. His team was overmatched against Rising Sons, but he still scored the lone goal on a dazzling shot on the run. A second-team all-league pick as a freshman and the most skilled of the Goforth boys, he’s fluid when he moves and he’s fun to watch. Imagine what he’ll be able to do when he adds some size.

Jacob Greiner ‘19, A, West Chester East (Pa.) / Man-Up
Greiner isn’t the biggest guy around, but that’s irrelevant when he’s too quick for anyone to stay in front of. His quickness enabled him to get open all day and he’s a strong finisher and also has good vision. He had a sweet goal against HEADstrong where he turned his man inside out and scored on the crease, and Greiner has a way of making those around him better. Bellarmine is fortunate to have him.

Zac Hanway ‘19, G, Avon Grove (Pa.) / Mesa Fresh
With the state champs graduating their starting goalie, you have to think that Hanway gets a shot at the job this spring. If so, the Red Devils will be getting a guy who’s gotten noticeably bigger, stronger and better. He was great all day Sunday for Mesa, always making opponents work hard for their goals, and he’s gotten significantly better in-tight, where he’s improved at staying with shooters throughout.

Nicholas Madonna ‘20, M, Bayard Rustin (Pa.) / PA Roughriders
What a baller. Like Goforth, he earned second-team All-Ches Mont honors as a freshman, and it’s not hard to see why. Madonna is excellent between the lines and is incredibly active for his Roughriders squad. “8 is all over the field,” was what one opponent exasperatedly yelled at his teammates, and he wasn’t wrong. He’s not necessarily going to be a huge points guy, but he’s a throwback middie who makes plays everywhere.

John Mathes ‘20, A, Ridgefield (Conn.) / Long Island Express North
The lefty sniper was frequently drawing early slides, and there’s good reason for it. He’s got a strong handle, he’s confident and he doesn’t rush things, even when he’s under pressure. He loves to try to get his shot just above GLE, but he’s also not averse to dumping it off if he finds someone with a chance to score.

Jackson Muller ‘20, M, Avon Grove (Pa.) / Rising Sons
Shooter, shooter, shooter. Muller can absolutely let it fly and he’s got deep range when he’s feeling it. He had an enormous step-down crank against Freedom right after making a superb pass to Pearse Glavin for a goal. He’s one of the new guys on a group that’s been together for a while, so he might have to play a few more games to really find his rhythm, but once he does, look out.

Ryan Nixon ‘20, D, Briar Woods (Va.) / VLC
A lefty takeaway artist, Nixon will be all too pleased to immediately remove that stick from your hands if you’re not careful. Once he sees an opportunity to get the ball out, his stick comes thundering down with a purpose. He does a nice job of helping out on double teams and is aggressive. I liked the way his approaches when going out to meet an attackman, and he had a dazzling ground ball in traffic against Rising Sons that only a few players could make.

Connor Pierce ‘18, M, Radnor (Pa.) / HEADstrong
The California transplant had a strong first season for the Raiders, emerging as their top midfield threat, and it looks like he’s taken a step forward after committing to Delaware this summer. At Quaker, he looked significantly more athletic, albeit against younger players, and looked very confident with the ball in his stick. He’s a weapon all over the field who does quite well in transition and defensively, and it looks like his offensive game has taken a step forward. Expect him to flourish for Radnor as a senior.

Chase Rondeau ‘19, D, La Salle (Pa.) / Big 4 HHH
Rondeau’s lacrosse IQ and overall intelligence stands out immediately. He seems to always be in the right place at the right time, and he’s got the athleticism and aggressiveness to thrive as an on-ball defender. He showcased a very active stick, frequently knocking down or picking off passes, and I loved his nasty streak. One of his coaches likened him to, “a coach on the field,” and Rondeau has the work ethic to be great.

Gavin Tygh ‘19, FO/M, Penn Charter (Pa.) / Big 4 HHH
There’s really not a lot left to say about Tygh, RR’s No. 13 Class of 2019 recruit and a five-star prospect. It’s awfully hard to beat him, and really, the only time I saw him lose one was when he couldn’t fish it out of his stick. He’s got tremendous athleticism – he’s played a key role in helping Penn Charter football to a 9-1 mark – and when he gets the ball, he’s always a threat to score or find a teammate. On the rare occasions he loses, he’s perfectly fine holding up at D-middie, much like he did at the Under Armour Underclass games. Lars Tiffany has to be ecstatic about the future of Virginia’s faceoff situation with Tygh in the fold.

Honorable Mention

Alex Albertson ‘19, D, Parkland (Pa.) / Mesa Fresh
Drew Brown ‘19, A, Radnor (Pa.) / HEADstrong
Joe Carozza ‘20, A, West Chester East (Pa.) / PA Roughriders
Rob Farrington ‘19, G, Perkiomen Valley (Pa.) / Man-Up
Logan Glick ‘20, D, Bronxville (Conn.) / Long Island Express North
Zach Janus ‘20, G, Paul VI (Va.) / VLC
Chad Kittaka ‘18, A, Carmel (Ind.) / Long Island Sting / Lehigh
Peter Lehman ‘20, A, Council Rock North (Pa.) / NXT
Stephen Rinck ‘19, M, North Penn (Pa.) / Phillie Elite
Greg Santa-Anna ‘19, A, Parkland (Pa.) / Big 4 HHH
Scott Smith ‘20, D, Conestoga (Pa.) / Rising Sons – Johns Hopkins
Steven Vlahakis ‘19, G, Manhasset (N.Y.) / FLG

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