Top 50 Sophs + Watchlist – Class of 2019

dsc_6881.jpgWith the proliferation in early commits lately, rising sophomore year has become a pivotal time for the recruiting process, as top 2019’s have been followed closely by top college programs for over a year by now. This list – which highlights the early Top 50 in order as well as a 50-man watchlist – is a combination of Recruiting Rundown’s coverage of over 30 events and the anonymous scouting reports from well over a dozen Division I recruiters.

This year’s list sees Connor Shellenberger, one of several future Blue Jays highlighted, on top after a huge summer. He’s followed by Top 10 players from seven other states, as well as touted recruits from beyond the traditional hotbeds, places like Alabama, Missouri and Florida, among others.  

1. Connor Shellenberger, A, St. Anne’s Belfield (Va.)
Club affiliations: Madlax
Commitment: Hopkins
Breakdown: Between his athleticism, superior stick skills and overall poise, it’s hard to argue that Shellenberger – who registered 70 points on STAB’s varsity – doesn’t deserve recognition as the No. 1 player in his class. Not only is he big, but he can dodge with success from just about everywhere, burying goals with a shot that is far more advanced than most players his age. Though not the traditional quarterback (he seldom dodges from X), his IQ, unselfishness and vision have been pivotal for Madlax’s success this summer. Shellenberger is able to make multi-goal outings look easy and does so with flair, stylishly eluding defenders and pinging corners. It may be bold to call him complete at this early stage, but he is awfully close, so it’s intriguing to think about where his game will be three years from now.

2. Will Frisoli, LSM, St. Sebastian’s (Mass.)
Club affiliations: Laxachusetts
Commitment: Ivy League
Breakdown: The darling of many a college recruiter before deciding to join his brother at an Ivy, Frisoli possesses a motor and tenacity that stands out from the very first whistle, roaming sideline to sideline. He’s a terror off the wings and has a knack for pushing transition when it’s there, but is also equally adept at both on-ball and off-ball D, demonstrating outstanding footwork and stick skills that more than make up for his lack of prototypical Division I size.

3. Connor Drake, M, Wilton (Conn.)
Club affiliations: LI Express, CT Chargers
Commitment: Duke
Breakdown: Though the lefty was arguably better in the fall than he was in the summer, it’s clear that Drake is among the most gifted offensive prospects in the ’19 class. Looking every bit of a future ACC midfielder, he’s able to pull hard and accurate shots from long range but also sees the field extremely well and knows when to move the ball. Posted 34 points on Wilton’s varsity as a freshman and will be a key contributor for years to come.

4. Jake Caputo, M, Middle Creek (N.C.)
Club affiliations: Team 91
Commitment: Duke
Breakdown: It’s easily apparent that he’s a college coach’s son (his father is Duke assistant Ron Caputo), as the North Carolina native has an understanding of the game that is second to none. He’s a go-to midfield initiator, but many evaluators feel that he’s well-rounded enough that you probably could rely on him to be an attack QB or shutdown d-middie if called upon. Beyond just putting the ball in the back of the net, Caputo simply makes the right play on a consistent basis, which is impressive considering his youth.

5. Scott Bower, D, Episcopal Dallas (Tex.)
Club affiliations: 3d, Texas Mustangs
Commitment: Virginia
Breakdown: Due to the fact that he often played up with the Mustangs 2018’s over the years, Bower has been a known commodity on the recruiting trail for quite some time. His ranginess made him an early recruit, but he’s more than just a big body, vocally quarterbacking the D and dominating his 1-on-1 matchups. In fact, his intimidating presence has caused a bunch of attackmen not even try dodging him, as it would likely result in a turnover.

6. Grant Mitchell, M, Calvert Hall (Md.)
Club affiliations: Thunder, FCA Maryland
Commitment: Ohio State
Breakdown: Usually pairing with twin brother and fellow Buckeye commit Connor, Mitchell is an intriguing athlete who has lacrosse skills that are more polished than one might not expect from a kid from Georgia. He looks like a college linebacker and moves incredibly well, making him a force while dodging alleys and sticking shots on the run. Word is that the Mitchell’s will transfer mid-year to Calvert Hall outside of Baltimore, where they’ll get the coaching and competition that will help their upside even more.

7. Kenny Brower, D, Kellenberg Memorial (N.Y.)
Club affiliations: Team 91
Commitment: Duke
Breakdown: As fundamentally sound as you’ll find for a rising sophomore, the left-handed Brower upped his game considerably between the fall and the summer, switching from Michigan to Duke back in July. The hard-nosed cover man is rock solid across the board, showing a high compete level and rarely getting beat by his man. Helps make up a Blue Devil recruiting class that will be hard to top, at least at this early point.

8. Clay Lanham, LSM/D, Georgetown Prep (Md.)
Club affiliations: Crabs
Commitment: North Carolina
Breakdown: The second player to commit in the entire class of 2019, Lanham boasts outstanding versatility that allows him to bump between LSM and close without skipping a beat. With an athletic build, he made his presence felt as a freshman for the Little Hoyas and carried that over to a great summer for the Crabs, Prep and the DC squad at Under Armour. In addition, he’s dangerous when the ball is in his stick chugging upfield.

9. Alex Slusher, A, Oregon Episcopal (Ore.)
Club affiliations: 3d Oregon, 3d National
Commitment: Princeton
Breakdown: Hailing from the Portland area, Slusher is the crown jewel of Matt Madalon’s recruiting class, a quarterback type who can hurt defenses in a number of ways. He has just enough burst to get topside with regularity, showing a savvy and confident dodging style as well as a strong shooting stroke with time and room. Coaches love how hard Slusher rides as well as his toughness when the ball is on the ground.

10. Owen Murphy, A, Medfield (Mass.) 
Club affiliations: 3d New England, 3d National
Commitment: Hopkins
Breakdown: Murphy is another excitable dodger out of the 3d program, dazzling on the club circuit with his combination of quick feet, smooth stick skills and ability to turn the corner. He’ll have to add to his thin frame, but is extremely intelligent and effective, able to beat even the most athletic defensemen. Played a considerable amount on varsity, netting an OT winner against area rival Dover-Sherborn.

11. Greg Campisi, LSM, St. Anthony’s (N.Y.) | Team 91 | Ivy League
12. Dyson Williams, A, Hill Academy (Ont.) | Whitby (box) | Duke
13. James Cipolla, A/M, Parkland (Pa.) | Big 4 HHH | Ohio State
14. Michael Swirbalus, M, St. Sebastian’s (Mass.) | Laxachusetts | *Duke
15. Gavin Tygh, FO/M, Penn Charter (Pa.) | Big 4 HHH | Virginia
16. Bryson Shaw, M, Bullis (Md.) | Crabs | Maryland
17. JJ Levandowski, M, St. Mark’s (Mass.) | Fighting Clams | *Syracuse
18. Lance Tillman, A, Valor Christian (Colo.) | 3d, FCA | North Carolina
19. Ben Finlay, D, Gonzaga (D.C.) | SweetLax | Hopkins
20. Jake Bonomi, A/M, St. Anthony’s (N.Y.) | LI Express | Michigan

21. Nick Harris, M, Dublin Jerome (Oh.) | Resolute | Notre Dame
22. Connor Humiston, A, Georgetown Prep (Md.) | Crabs | Virginia
23. Christian Mule, A, Half Hollow Hills West (N.Y.) | Team 91 | Duke
24. Connor Whalen, LSM/D, Bishop Shanahan (Pa.) | Freedom | Maryland
25. Tim Marcille, G, Gonzaga (D.C.) | Madlax | Hopkins
26. Michael Grogan, LSM/D, Episcopal (Va.) | Madlax | Duke
27. Brett Mallee, LSM, La Salle (Pa.) | Big 4 HHH | Maryland
28. Emmett Barger, A/M, St. Anne’s Belfield (Va.) | Madlax | Notre Dame
29. Kelan Duff, LSM/D, Culver (Ind.) | SweetLax | Maryland
30. Peter Garno, M, Haverford (Pa.) | Mesa Fresh | Virginia

31. Connor Mitchell, M, Calvert Hall (Md.) | Thunder, FCA Maryland | Ohio State
32. Jack Sawyer, A/M, Calvert Hall (Md.) | FCA | Maryland
33. Angelo Petrakis, F/O, Massapequa (N.Y.) | Team 91 | Lehigh
34. Joe Destro, LSM, Don Bosco Prep (N.J.) | Patriot | North Carolina
35. Logan McNaney, G, Corning (N.Y.) | SweetLax | Maryland
36. Brett Handsor, M, Culver (Ind.) | Edge | Hopkins
37. Jake Giulieri, D, Georgetown Prep (Md.) | Blackwolf | Notre Dame
38. Christian Cechini, A, Apex (N.C.) | Leading Edge | Penn State
39. Hunter Jaronski, LSM/D, Academy New Church (Pa.) | Duke’s LC | Hopkins
40. Andrew Tyeryar, F/O, St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes (Va.) | Madlax | Michigan

41. Michael Roche, M, St. John’s Prep (Mass.) | Laxachusetts | Maryland
42. Parker Byrd, D, Calvert Hall (Md.) | FCA | North Carolina
43. Christian Ronda, A, Brunswick (Conn.) | Prime Time | Princeton
44. Will Hurley, LSM/D, Manheim Township (Pa.) | Big 4 HHH | Michigan
45. Joey Taylor, A, La Salle (Pa.) | Duke’s LC | Penn State
46. Jack Brennan, A, Irondequoit (N.Y.) | SweetLax | Maryland
47. Danny Maltz, A, Riverside (Va.) | SweetLax | Maryland
48. Liam Powderly, A, McDonogh (Md.) | Crabs | Uncommitted
49. Gabe Furey, M, Episcopal Academy (Pa.) | NXT | Virginia
50. Devon McLane, A, Westfield (N.J.) | Patriot | Brown

WATCHLIST – ALPHABETICAL
Collin Almeida, M, Falmouth (Mass.) | Laxachusetts | Penn State
Andy Andrews, M, Gilman (Md.) | FCA | Uncommitted
Matt Angelo, F/O, Lawrenceville (N.J.) | Leading Edge | North Carolina
Jacob Angelus, A/M, Paul VI (Va.) | Blackwolf | Hopkins
Alex Bamford, A, Taft (Conn.) | Express North | Michigan
Tommy Bavuso, D, Lawrenceville (N.J.) | Leading Edge | Penn
Harrison Berke, LSM/D, Lawrenceville (N.J.) | Leading Edge | Hopkins
Cole Biggins, D, Duxbury (Mass.) | Laxachusetts | Air Force 
Canyon Birch, A, Manasquan (N.J.) | Upstate LC | Army
Topher Bligh, A/M, St. Ignatius Prep (Calif.) | West Coast Starz | Brown
Sutton Boland, D, Victor (N.Y.) | SweetLax | Penn State
Drew Brennfleck, M, Mountain Lakes (N.J.) | STEPS | Virginia
Alex Breschi, M, Loyola Blakefield (Md.) | FCA | North Carolina
Neal Brown, M, McCallie (Tenn.) | LB3 | Uncommitted
BJ Burlace, LSM/D, St. Mary’s (Md.) | Annapolis Hawks | Maryland
Graham Bundy, M, MICDS (Mo.) | West Coast Starz | Georgetown
Conor Calderone, F/O, Smithtown West (N.Y.) | Laxachusetts | Maryland
Chad Cannon, M, Salesianum (Del.) | Big 4 HHH | Providence
Owen Cauley, D, Severn (Md.) | Crabs | Penn
Frankie Ciniglio, D, Ward Melville (N.Y.) | Team 91 | Cornell
Joey Corbett, FO/M, Trinity-Pawling (N.Y.) | Prime Time | Maryland
Payton Cormier, A, Oakville Trafalgar (Ont.) | Edge | Virginia
Peter Davies, A, Taft (Conn.) | Laxachusetts | Michigan
Sean Donnelly, A/M, IMG Academy (Fla.) | SweetLax | Syracuse
Anthony Forziati, A, Pingree (Mass.) | Fighting Clams | UMass
Mac Fotiades, G, St. Sebastian’s (Mass.) | Laxachusetts | Michigan
Gabe Galbraith, D, Highland Park (Tex.) | TX Mustangs | Ohio State
Chris Glynn, M, Manhasset (N.Y.) | LI Express | Georgetown
Matt Gunty, F/O, St. Albans (D.C.) | FCA | Brown
Mark Hand, M, Briarwood Christian (Ala.) | 3d Colorado | North Carolina
Jack Henderson, F/O, Episcopal Academy (Pa.) | NXT | Penn State
Timmy Lischer, M, Salisbury (Conn.) | SweetLax | Michigan
Cade MacLeod, A, Roswell (Ga.) | Thunder | Georgetown
Quentin Matsui, D, Eden Prairie (Minn.) | Team MN | Denver
Elijah Myers, M, MICDS (Mo.) | West Coast Starz | North Carolina
Patrick O’Neill, D, Ward Melville (N.Y.) | Team 91 | Brown
Connor O’Reilly, D, St. Anthony’s (N.Y.) | LI Express | Georgetown
Mitch Pehlke, A, Stone Bridge (Va.) | SweetLax | Ohio State
Bryson Rhee, M, Academy New Church (Pa.) | Duke’s LC | Syracuse
Tyler Sandoval, F/O, Chaminade (N.Y.) | LI Express | Princeton
Brad Santore, M, Salesianum (Del.) | Annapolis Hawks | Penn State
Max Schalit, D, Matanzas (Fla.) | SweetLax FL | Notre Dame
John Schreiber, M, Iona Prep (N.Y.) | Express North | Princeton
Jack Spence, M, Springfield-Delco (Pa.) | Big 4 HHH | Lehigh
Jake Taylor, A, Regis Jesuit (Colo.) | Denver Elite | Denver
Colton Teitelbaum, G, Locust Valley (N.Y.) | LI Express | Loyola
Christian Tomei, G, Oxbridge Academy (Fla.) | SweetLax FL | Ohio State
Deven Varney, G, Roxbury Latin (Mass.) | Laxachusetts | Penn
Dawson Wynne, M, Salisbury (Conn.) | SweetLax | Maryland
Zach Young, LSM/D, Hill Academy (Ont.) | Edge | North Carolina