LILacrosseNews.com, Posted 7/4/14
Hurricane Arthur failed to halt the action today as hundreds of athletes competed in the National 175 Best of the Best Individual Showcase at Mitchel Complex.
ToplaxRecruits.com spoke with three players as well as co-director Jeff Brameier about the event, which is part of a weekend lacrosse showcase that is raising money for the Navy Seals Foundation. A presentation was to be held today, but was rescheduled for Saturday due to the inclement weather.
National 175 will donate $10,000 to the Navy Seals Foundation as action continues Saturday in the Best of the Best Team Showcase, which has attracted 39 elite club programs.
Teilen Celentano, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, Midfield and Faceoffs, 2015
Why did you attend the showcase?
Celentano: “My team is involved in the 175 tournament and and I saw that as a great opportunity so I applied and got in. I’m used to playing in the United States. I’ve been playing lacrosse in the US since I was 13, going everywhere from Baltimore to Philly and Florida so it’s just another weekend away from home.”
How did you perform today?
Celentano: “I felt good today; it was a little wet and a little soggy, but I’ve been having fun and playing well. I’ve been scoring goals, making plays and winning faceoffs. I’m playing on shin splints right now so my legs are hurting pretty bad, but I feel I’ve showed well. I’ve shown I have heart and I have worked through it and shown I have character. I really hope to get a Division I scholarship. In Canada we don’t have Division I lacrosse; we only have club lacrosse so the only real opportunity is to come to the US. The competition was strong today. I’m impressed with the skills, especially with the team I was on today. We had a good team today and I was really happy with it.”
Ryan Cornell, Darien (CT), Goalie, 2017
How did you perform in the showcase?
Cornell: “I feel pretty good about the way I played today. The first game was definitely better. In the second game the rain came on and turned it into a mud pit, but it was still fun. I hope to get seen by a couple of college coaches, play with my team over the Fourth of July weekend and have fun.
“The rain affected me a little more in the second game. It is harder to see in the rain and when the ball gets a little muddy you can’t really see it as well. I feel I stood out a little bit because I came out of the goal a little bit and intercepted a couple of passes. I still didn’t do too well with stepping to the ball and have to work on that more.”
Jake McMahon, Chaminade (NY), Goalie, 2017
How did you perform in the showcase?
McMahon: “I went up against pretty good competition. My outlets were alright and I made a good amount of saves. The rain affected the way I was able to throw the ball and it affected the way the ball comes to you because it bounces weird. I’m playing in the (BOB) tournament and I think it will be better than today because it’s not supposed to rain tomorrow.”
Brameier spoke about the goal of the showcases, which followed up Thursday’s tryouts for the Stars and Stripes for the High School Challenge vs. Team Maple Leafs.
Brameier: “We are still trying to grow the sport. The sport is one of the fastest growing sports in the country. It has gained in popularity, but you have to find ways to branch it out across the country. It’s all the way out to California and it is forking out to Texas, Florida and Arizona. That is the exciting part about why we are doing this kind of programming; kids can see a sport and the way it is played.
“This neck of the woods is sort of the birthplace of lacrosse between Baltimore and Long Island, which are considered the hotbeds of it. Part of why we do this is to see it continue to grow and what will help are more college coaches and colleges picking it up. It is just a matter of time before more colleges start picking it up, like Stanford, USC, Texas and down to Florida and the SEC schools. You are seeing more of these showcases because it is getting competitive for spots and kids want to find a way to get themselves out there and get into a good school. This sport helps them get into a college they might not have necessarily got into on their own.”
Brameier spoke on the importance of supporting organizations like the Navy Seals Foundation.
Brameier: “You have to have a purpose in life and in this day and age there are a lot of people that do a lot of good things for our country. We decided to latch on to the Navy Seals Foundation because it is in the growing stage. They aren’t as recognized as some of these other foundations and any bit that we can do to not just support them but to get them to be recognized and understood is good.
“The popularity of the Navy Seals certainly grew with some of the missions they have done in recent times and the movies that have come out. But I think there is more to it you just can’t fathom the families of the Navy Seals and what they go through and that is true of all our troops. To me this is a way to give back to our country and those that are serving and protecting us and giving us the rights and freedoms we have in this country. I think our donation isn’t big enough. It is an opportunity for us to say thanks. The donation is part of saying thanks but the bigger part is getting the word out, getting the recognition out and getting people to know there is a Navy Seals Foundation. It is just another great association to be involved with.”