The 2021 season was a season in which grad transfers and fifth-year players seemed to dominate the landscape. However, as usual, there were freshmen at every position that broke through and shined during their first season of college lacrosse.
That was the sweet, sweet sound that came when Penn State fifth-year attackman Mac O’Keefe broke the NCAA career goals record of 212, which was previously held by Duke’s Justin Guterding, with his second goal of the contest.
Since the program’s move from club to DI in 2012, Michigan lacrosse has been anything but special. The Wolverines have only had two winning seasons and won three conference games in the Big Ten. Michigan has been at the bottom when it comes to DI programs in the midwest, getting surpassed by newer programs such as Marquette and seemingly falling further behind established ones like Ohio State and Notre Dame.
Kevin Conry and the Michigan Wolverines picked up 2022 commitment out of the Lone Star State on Wednesday, as Westlake, Texas, defenseman Carter Barksdale announced that he would be taking his talent to Ann Arbor. Barksdale was the first of two commitments on the day for Michigan, as Culver, Ind., LSM Jimmy Pisani announced his commitment to the Wolverines two hours later.
Midnight on September 1st, as it has since 2017, marked the opening of the contact period between 2022 recruits (juniors) and college coaches. And while the recruiting process will be a bit different for the class of 2022, just like this whole year has, due to limitations brought on by the Coronavirus outbreak, there have already been multiple commitments through the first few days of the contact period being open.
The high school lacrosse season is on the horizon and this season there are some very good teams across the country that will be very competitive not only in their state or region, but nationally as well. Of course some of the traditional powers will be on this list, but there are also some teams that the casual fan might not know all the much about.
*Note: List is in no particular order.*
Culver Military Academy (IN)
Culver has been one of the most dominant high school teams in the country for the better part of about a decade or so. They always have some of the best players from the US and Canada on their team and Coach Posner does a great job of coaching them up and getting all that talent to play as one unit. Being a Military boarding school helps with that as well I should say. This season the Eagles have 19 current division one commits and more to come on this 2019 squad. This team has future pro’s at every position and it will be very hard for any team to stop them. After watching Culver about four times last season and seeing what they have back, I honestly think this may be the best Culver team we have seen to date.
The Hill Academy (ON)
The Hill Academy out of Ontario has won the first two Geico High School Lacrosse Nationals. Each year Hill get’s more talent and keeps getting better. The Merrill’s have built something special with the Hill Academy and that just keeps on continuing. With 13 current Division one commits on their roster the Hill looks just as good as ever. Just like many other sports centric prep schools they have future college stars and pro’s all over the place and they are going to win and win a lot. No doubt about that. I honestly can’t wait to see how this Hill team has improved with some of their younger studs back from last year.
IMG Academy (FL)
Yeah, it was a shaky year for IMG in 2018 as they didn’t have near the amount of success they were looking for. Fortunately for the Ascenders they have a lot of talent back, as expected of a school like IMG, and they are looking to rebound. With 11 players currently committed to play Division One lacrosse IMG will be competitors on the national stage again this season, and hopefully improve a lot from last year.
The prep school out of Connecticut has pro and Division one talent all up and down the field. The Crimson Knights do lose a lot of great players from last season, but they return just as much talent as they lost with 20 players currently committed to play Division One lacrosse. Salisbury looks to be right up there again this season competing for a national championship along with the rest of the big boys as usual. They will be led by senior midfielder and Duke commit Connor Drake, amongst others.
Calvert Hall (MD)
Calvert Hall is a perennial power in the MIAA and always have a lot of talent, even though they graduated a slew of seniors in 2018. The Cardinals are coming off of two straight MIAA A conference championship’s and have a ton of talent back, as always. The Cardinals are led by 2019 Ohio State commits midfielder Grant Mitchell and defenseman Jacob Snyder.
Ponte Vedra (FL)
The Sharks look to be the favorites to win it all in Florida this year as they have one of the best teams in the country and play a pretty tough schedule as well with teams like Calvert Hall (MD), Episcopal Dallas (TX), and others on the schedule. The Sharks will be led by junior midfielders Dylan Hess who is committed to Georgetown and Carter Parlette who is a Notre Dame commit, as well as a whole host of other player heading to DI schools.
A power in the south McCallie is loaded with talent this season just as they have been in the past as well. Head Coach Troy Kemp and the Blue Tornado feature eight current DI commits this season. They are for sure the favorite in Division I in Tennessee this season. They are led by senior defenseman Cam Henry who is heading to Duke, senior midfielder and Ohio State commit Eli Ensor. as well as junior midfielder’s Carter Henry who is heading to Yale and Rutgers commit Ellison Burt-Murray.
Episcopal School of Dallas (TX)
The Eagles have a new coaching staff and a boat load of talent coming into this 2019 season. Many have already said that there is no doubt that Episcopal Dallas (TX) will be in the state championship this season. They will be led by one of the best defenses in the country with senior’s Scott Bower who is heading to Virginia and Ohio State commit Carson Raney.
Torrey Pines (CA)
Regional and national powerhouse Torrey Pines is back and looking to be great again this season with another very tough national schedule. The Falcons have a lot of talent as always and will be led by senior midfielder Michael Mines who is committed to Ohio State, as well as many other DI commits.
After winning the IAC championship in 2018 Bullis looks to repeat as they return some great talent on both sides of the ball. They will be led by junior midfielder and Jacksonville commit Immanuel Brown, as well as senior attackman Robert Schain who is headed to Penn.