NJCAA Lacrosse has finally started, and in the opening weekend’s action we were treated to some tough games, and a statement game for the ages. I’ll start off with the latest official NJCAA Poll, and then go into more detail from there. Let’s dig right and talk JuCo Lacrosse!
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Latest Official NJCAA Poll
1) Onondaga CC – 26-2 win over Delhi, next up Finger Lakes
2) Nassau CC – 14-6 win over Navy Prep, next up Anne Arundel
3) CCBC Essex – 17-3 win over Delaware Tech, next up Genesee
4) Genesee CC – next up, Jefferson (canceled – no field)
5) Anne Arundel CC – neat up, Delaware Tech
6) SUNY Delhi – 26-2 loss to OCC, next up Ocean County
7) Harford CC – next up, NOVA
8) Suffolk CC – next up, Brookdale
9) Monroe CC – next up, Broome
10) ASA College – 21-16 loss to Army Prep, next up Delaware Tech
I was pretty close in my preseason poll, but a nod goes out to Suffolk CC for making moves into the Top 10 where it matters.
NJCAA Quick Statement Game Reports
OCC Vs Delhi had to be a statement game. Because while I do think Delhi is a top 10 team, and I didn’t think they would beat OCC… but for OCC to win the game 26-2? That’s just insane. In no other division in all of college lacrosse could that happen. When Coach Wilbur said that this year’s OCC team might be better than last year’s team, he wasn’t kidding.
Essex also looked strong as they rolled Delaware Tech 17-3. Not a bad start.
Nassau’s game vs Navy Prep was a “physical game by both teams” according to our tipster, and while Nassau led by about four goals for much of the game, they pulled away in the fourth to win by 8. While Navy Prep isn’t an NJCAA school, they play 4 or 5 NJCAA schools each year, and are always competitive. It was also noted that “Navy Prep had a very shallow bench, maybe six subs total” and Nassau’s goalie scored an end to end goal in this one. Keep an eye on him, whoever he is!
Potomac State goes to OT with Ocean County, and this was the first ever NJCAA game for both first year programs. Both teams clearly wanted it, and it turned into an absolute barn burner with Potomac State taking a 23-22 win in OT. I know, that’s a CRAZY intro to JuCo lacrosse, but I love it! Blake Curry had 9 goals and an assist for ten points in his first game at PS. Tommy Scanlan, not to be outdone, dished out ten assists, and added on six goals for a gaudy 16 points. In a 23-22 OT win. Had to say it, just to prove to myself it’s real. I saw the film, it was real, and AWESOME.
From JuCo To NCAA – One Big Star
Brady Lawrence was a 2013 2nd Team NJCAA All American goaltender two years ago for Genesee, and now he’s back in net at NCAA D2 Seton Hill in PA. SHU is 3-0, and Lawrence has been coming up big in between the pipes. He had 10 saves on 13 shots against Chestnut Hill in a 15-3 win, and 13 saves in an important 12-11 win over Mercy.
Ever seen this video before, it’s a gem! Spinning goalie toe drag:
[fvplayer src=”https://youtube.com/watch?v=xHikcp7JzSA” splash=”https://i.ytimg.com/vi/xHikcp7JzSA/hqdefault.jpg” caption=”GCC Goalie Spinning T-drag”]
From JuCo To Pro – Another Star!
Marty Hill was an all conference and all region player for Herkimer, and he signed a contract with the Rochester Knighthawks this winter. Hill was drafted by the Khawks in 2010, but never made the team. In 2012 he was part of a Creator’s Cup winning team, and in 2013 he played for Six Nations when they won the Mann Cup. Hill hasn’t seen game time for Rochester this year, but that’s a tough lineup to crack. We wish him the best of luck for the rest of the season and hope he gets that first NLL game under his belt soon!
JuCo Interview – Genesee’s Dave Hoover
Please describe Genesee to people who don’t know much about the school! Where do you draw from, and what is the school like in terms of size, offerings, etc?
Genesee CC is located 30 minutes from Buffalo on the West and 30 minutes from Rochester to the East. It’ enrollment is approx. 7,000 students including both full-time and part-time. The Batavia campus is the main campus, but Genesee CC has additional satellite campuses around a 50 mile radius.
Genesee offers over 60 academic programs of study designed to fill a wide variety of needs and careers. Genesee offers 15 men’s & women’s sports, has a lighted turf field for lacrosse and will be starting construction on a event center & field house in mid 2015. Genesee CC draws the majority of their students from the surrounding 8 communities and pulls some from the Buffalo and Rochester markets.
Do you recruit kids from outside of this area? How do you find players?
Yes, with Batavia HS the only HS within 25 miles of the main campus that plays boys lacrosse. So we recruit almost exclusively from the Buffalo, NY section 6 high schools and Rochester section 5 high schools. Along with those two areas the coaches also recruit in Canada and a number of other states in the US. The coaches find players by attending a number of high school games, summer & fall high school recruiting tournaments and creating good relationships with HS coaches in the WNY area for help.
The turnover rate at a two year school is rapid when compared to a four year school, so how does a program remain competitive year in and year out? Is it a constant battle?
Yes, the turnover is fast, and yes, it is a constant battle to keep our player numbers and quality at our desired level. It is a numbers game, meaning the more HS student athletes the coaches talk to and recruit, the more success you have with players committing to Genesee. Also, with the success Genesee CC has had on the lacrosse field the last 4 years, the school now receives many more inquiries about the college and our lacrosse program. Recruits now have some knowledge of our lacrosse success.
(Pictured above; 2015 Genesee Captains: #25 – Josh Wester, #18 – Brody Jorgenson, #1 – Jimmy Smith, #12 – Reed Hnidy, #28 – Jacob Bomberry)
Who are some of your most successful players post-Genesee? Do you have many alums playing D1, or professional lacrosse?
Our program is still young, but we have had a number of successful players at the following DII and DIII colleges: JD Skura 2011 NJCAA All American Defense to CW Post, Johnny Astrologo 2014 All American Defense to Dowling, Brady Lawrence 2013 All American Goalie to Seton Hill, Spencer Halliwell-Allen 2012 All-American Midfield to Pfeiffer, Pat McMahon 2012 Goalie to Mars Hill, Connor Latimer 2012 All-American Attack to Keuka (had many DI offers, but went to Keuka and broke all the scoring records in two seasons). Marcus Palvino 2013 All-American Midfield to SUNY Brockport, Will Mulcahey 2012 Attack to Lake Erie, Tyler Meeghan 2014 Midfield to Mercyhurst.
We have many more listed on our GCC men’s lacrosse website.
Without giving opposing coaches a full scouting report, how is your team shaping up this year?
The coaches feel the strength of the team will start at the midfield with attack close behind. We feel we have some very athletic and skilled players on offense. The defense is athletic in it’s own right, but is young and their success will depend on how they jell as a group as the season moves on.
In the goal, Genesee CC has a very competitive battle going on for the top spot. Overall, Genesee CC is shaping up to be a solid, competitive team for 2015.
Lacrosse is growing all across the country, but college programs are not popping up quite as quickly. Will this result in even more talent heading to Junior Colleges? Or could something else happen, like NJCAA expansion?
Lacrosse is growing all across the country and I believe there are a good number of DII and DIII colleges starting new programs. Hence, there won’t automatically be more players heading to junior colleges. However, junior colleges have become more interesting to many student athletes for what they offer at a much lower cost for the first two years! And excellent transfer options if they keep their academics up along with their lacrosse ability.
Many thanks to Dave Hoover of Genesee for taking the time to speak with us!
We’ll be back next week with another version of the JuCo report. Brace yourself, it will continue to be awesome.