Trevor Baptiste is undoubtedly one of the best (if not the best) faceoff specialists the game of lacrosse has ever seen. He was a NCAA Division 1 national champion at the University of Denver in 2015, an NCAA record holder, and still is one the most dominant faceoff specialists in professional lacrosse today. However, the most impressive fact about him is that over halfway into his senior year of high school he did not have a single NCAA Division 1 lacrosse offer and was slated to play at a Division 3 school in rural Pennsylvania.
But how does a kid go from no NCAA Division 1 offers heading into March of his senior year, to one of the best players in the game today?
Let’s start from the very beginning of his lacrosse career.
Trevor Baptiste is not your typical lacrosse legend. He was not born with a lacrosse stick in his hand, he did not come from a family of talented lacrosse players, he actually is the complete opposite. Leading up to sixth grade, Trevor’s passion was swimming, where he was one of the best young swimmers in the state and northeast region. It was after some persuasion by his friends he picked up lacrosse that year in the sixth grade and fell in love with the sport despite not being a natural.
Fast forward to spring of his freshman year of high school, Trevor would go on to make the varsity lacrosse squad as a freshman and his love for swimming would take a backseat as he fully submerged himself into the sport of lacrosse. Heading into his sophomore year was when Baptiste decided he would hone in on the faceoff-x as his true position.
It wasn’t until March of his senior year when he would get the call from Bill Tierney (University of Denver Men’s Lacrosse Head Coach) that would change the trajectory of his athletic career and life forever. That spring, Coach Tierney flew Trevor from his small town in New Jersey, to the University of Denver for an overnight visit and to watch a game. This is where he would ultimately convince Baptiste to spend his next four years playing college lacrosse at the University of Denver.
Baptiste’s four years at the University of Denver was nothing short of historic. Baptiste earned the starting role at the faceoff position as a freshman and never looked back. In his freshman campaign, Baptiste would help Denver to a NCAA Division 1 National Championship while simultaneously earning himself a spot on the USILA All-American First Team slate. He would go on to earn that All-American First Team spot every season for four years straight, being the first person to do so since Mikey Powell in 2004.
Additionally, he was a four-time All-Big East First Team selection, a four-time Tewaaraton nominee, and two-time finalist for the Tewaaraton award as well. Trevor would finish his career as an NCAA record holder with over 1100 faceoff wins and a .714% win percentage. Nothing short of historic for a person that nearly never saw the Division 1 stage.
Shortly following the conclusion of his senior year, he would go on to win a gold medal playing with Team USA in the FIL Lacrosse World Championships and would be the number one draft pick in the MLL Draft that year being selected by the Boston Cannons.
As a professional lacrosse player, Baptiste has not disappointed. Following a brief stint in the MLL with the Cannons prior to the inaugural PLL season, Trevor has continued to be a force in the sport at the faceoff-X. In the PLL inaugural season, Trevor put up an amazing season with over 70 groundballs and a 63% faceoff win percentage, earning himself an All-Star Team selection and the Paul Cantabene Faceoff Man of the Year award. In the 2021 season, Trevor would also end the season leading the PLL in faceoff win percentage and groundballs.
With the 2022 PLL season underway, he is off to another hot start. Baptiste has his Atlas team sitting at 2-1 currently holding a 73% faceoff win percentage and is second in the league for groundballs at 20. If Trevor can continue his dominance, this could be the year that the Atlas make a serious run at the championship given the new pieces brought to the team. Although only time will tell what the Atlas will accomplish with him, time has already shown Trevor Baptiste to be a generational talent in the sport of lacrosse.