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.@LongstrethLAX girls’ recruit: Westhampton Beach 2019 DEF Dillon commits to Iona

Tuesday, 5th September 2017

Categories Girl's/Women's, High school, Recruiting  

By Chris Goldberg, Posted 9/5/17

Westhampton Beach 2019 defender Kerry Dillon has made a verbal commitment to play Division I lacrosse at Iona College.

Kerry Dillon profile:

Kerry Dillon

High school: Westhampton Beach Senior HS

Position: Defense

Grad year: 2019

College committed to: Iona College

Club team: LI Yellow Jackets

Lacrosse honors: Started as a sophomore – “We play a zone defense and this year I was able to learn the backer position. I usually play low defense but this position has taught me to move my feet faster and has made my positioning on defense more flexible. I will continue to play backer for my next two seasons as our other senior backer has graduated.”

Academic honors: Honor Roll (90% or higher). National Junior Honor Society. Student Government. Our varsity team runs a summer camp for grades K-9 and I helped coach this summer. I also volunteer at my local church as a religion teacher and alter server. I also participate in Maureen’s Heaven, making beds and lunches for the homeless.

Expected major: Criminal Justice

Why did you choose Iona? “My recruit story is actually not your typical one. I met Coach (Courtney) Bertolone at an all day Winter Blitz clinic in Pennsylvania back in January, 2017. From then on, it was nonstop communication with both Coach Bertolone and Coach (Michelle) Mason. I met Coach Mason at the Iona 5v5 tournament held on Long Island. After, I was able to get on the phone with both Coach Mason and Coach Bertolone and discuss a future visit. I visited the campus twice, once to see the Gaels take on Lehigh and another to shadow a freshman, go to class, and watch a lift and practice. They also came to my high school game against New Canaan. It didn’t take long for me to fall in love with the coaching mentality of both Coach Mason and Coach Bertolone. I can recall countless phone calls with both coaches about my future at Iona and what I was looking for in the recruiting process, but what drew me in the most was their obvious appreciation for me and the process in which I was going through as a student athlete. To them I wasn’t just another commit, but an actual person they took the time to get to know. Right around the time I was ready to finalize the process and commit to Iona, the new NCAA rule dropped. I had an important phone call the night of the rule change, and I can still remember how heartbroken I was to receive the news when my mom came home from work. Needless to say, I was determined to stick with Iona, and I actually called Coach Mason that night and left her a voicemail summing up how upset I was, but also how excited I was to get on the phone with her come September 1st. Coach Mason and Coach Bertolone kept a close eye on me all summer as I saw them almost every tournament and also in attendance to one of my games during each tournament. The final end to this summer was the Iona Gaels Elite Summer camp at the end of July. I had my mind set on Iona and I knew this was the last time that I could prove how much this all meant to me to both Coach Mason and Coach Bertolone. Camp was a huge eye opener as I got to meet three commits from my 2019 class, but all the rest of the 2018 and 2017 commits. I had one of the best times and had the opportunity to play with some of the best lacrosse players I had ever seen. Although the rule cut into my recruiting process, I can see how it benefitted me. It gave me time to grow over the summer and I got to see the campus for three days at camp. It made me be able to clearly see myself at Iona and call it home. After camp I went to see my cousin who lives near by campus, and everything became to clearly fit into place. I knew I had a great showing at camp and was excited for what September 1st had in store. The morning of September 1st was definitely nerve racking, but you can always count on Coach Mason for a text at 6am to set up a call. That day I got to speak to her and I couldn’t be more excited to hear her voice after a very long 4.5 months of waiting. The next day I got back on the phone with her and both my parents and discussed further into the plan and finalized details. After the call, I talked to my parents about the opportunity presented to me and how I was ready to take it. I couldn’t handle the anticipation and called Coach Mason back to tell her I’d like to continue my career at Iona. I then called Coach Bertolone who had already heard the news. I couldn’t be more grateful for this opportunity to continue the game of women’s lacrosse at Iona. I also couldn’t be more thankful to both my now future coaches, Coach Mason and Coach Bertolone for keeping their commitment to me, as I kept my commitment to them during these long 4.5 months we could not talk. I am thrilled to announce my commitment to Iona! GO GAELS!!”

HS team’s 2018 outlook: “My high school team looks to keep advancing in 2018. This past season, for the second time in program history, we advanced to the semifinals. Last season, we made it to the first round of playoffs. With each season we look to get better. For 2018, we are looking at a county championship. However, are strongest point is our literal ‘teamwork.’ Yes, our team consists of many talented girls, but this past season we have all come together and bonded in a way we have never seen before and I believe that is the key reason we made it so far.”

Thank You: “I’d like to give thanks for the bottom of my heart to everyone who has gotten me to this point in my life. To be able to continue the sport I love, at the college I love, and at the Division 1 level seemed almost impossible. With the help of one of the greatest travel programs, Long Island Yellow Jackets, great travels coaches, Kristin LoNigro and Vinny Grazidei; an insane high school team and high school coaches, Mary Bergmann and Jackson shoutout WHB varsity lax; my mom for driving me up and down the eastern seaboard; my siblings Kristen and Kevin for their unconditional love; and all my friends and family members for all their love and support. I’d also like to thank Larry Citerelli, who taught me the importance of commitment, strength, and determination. To all then unmentionables, and people that have come into my life to teach me some of the most valuable and important life lessons, I’d like to thank you all. I am truly blessed and humbled by this experience.”

Other schools considered: Temple University, Mount Saint Mary’s University, Colgate University, Monmouth University, Tampa University, Pace University, Lafayette College

Longstreth Women’s Sports, the official sponsor for girls’ recruits, congratulates Haylee Kuprianchik. Longstreth specializes in equipment, uniforms and apparel for women’s sports. Longstreth carries a huge selection of all the best women’s heads, handles, goalie gear and player accessories – including shoes and apparel. Visit for directions and information.

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