Daily Archives: May 30, 2009

California’s Top High School Lacrosse Players: St. Ignatius Middie Rob Emery Represents The New Wave Of Lacrosse Student-Athletes Coming Out Of The West


“He’s the type of player who could play any sport in college,” first-year St. Ignatius coach Chris Packard said about Rob Emery. “He’s too big, too fast and too tall.”

“He’s the type of player who could play any sport in college,” first-year St. Ignatius coach Chris Packard said about Rob Emery. “He’s too big, too fast and too tall.” Photo by LaxBuzz

 

St. Ignatius Lacrosse Middie Rob Emery has size at 6'2" and at 175 lbs. can create shots. Photo by LaxBuzz.

St. Ignatius Lacrosse Middie Rob Emery has size at 6'2" and at 175 lbs. can create shots. Photo by LaxBuzz.

 

St. Ignatius junior middie Rob Emery is regarded as the third-best recruit in the nation in the class of 2010 by Inside Lacrosse Magazine. In February, he verbally committed to Virginia, arguably the top program in the country.

St. Ignatius junior middie Rob Emery is regarded as the third-best recruit in the nation in the class of 2010 by Inside Lacrosse Magazine. In February, he verbally committed to Virginia, arguably the top program in the country. Photo by LaxBuzz

St. Ignatius middie Rob Emery possesses great hands to go with the creativity and the speed (he’s the fastest player on his team) necessary to play a the highest level... He points to the coaching he received at Town, the athleticism he inherited from his sporty parents and the recommendation Packard – a former Cornell player – provided to get him an invitation to last summer’s exclusive Nike Blue Chip Camp in Maryland. It was there that the West Coast kid left his imprint on discerning eyes. Photo by LaxBuzz

St. Ignatius middie Rob Emery possesses great hands to go with the creativity and the speed (he’s the fastest player on his team) necessary to play a the highest level... He points to the coaching he received at Town, the athleticism he inherited from his sporty parents and the recommendation Packard – a former Cornell player – provided to get him an invitation to last summer’s exclusive Nike Blue Chip Camp in Maryland. It was there that the West Coast kid left his imprint on discerning eyes. Photo by LaxBuzz

California High School Lacrosse Participation: Only 173 High Schools (Out of 2,079) Play CIF Lacrosse Due To Issues That Include Funding, Liability, And Fear Of School Boards To Elevate Schools


Of 2,079 California high schools, only 173 play CIF lacrosse.

Liability questions have been raised. Staffing issues have been raised. Medical supervision issues have been raised. Maintenance issues have been raised. Playing site issues have been raised.

(From PressDemocrat.com article)    Their zeal was electric, fusing our phone connection with hot sparks that, I am Northern California Junior Lacrosse Associationsure, could be seen for miles outside on the phone lines linking our conversation. Todd Samet and Ted Spores were talking lacrosse, a sport for some, a caffeine derivative for them. So intense was their attachment to the sport, I suspected their wives aren’t permitted to say “lacrosse” at 10 p.m. for fear the word would keep their husbands up at night.

Three reasons have prompted them to be that way.

First, the lacrosse club teams from Petaluma and Casa Grande will be competing for a shot at the state club championship this weekend in Newbury Park. From the same city, they are Northern California’s representatives, a neat trick if there ever was one.

Last weekend in the quarterfinals, Casa beat the Palo Alto Tomahawks, a team with players from two high schools (Palo Alto and Gunn). In turn, Petaluma beat a team composed of players from Folsom and Rancho Cordova.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if Petaluma and Casa play for the state championship on Sunday,” said Samet, Casa’s coach.

Second, there’s the $20,000. The Petaluma Youth Lacrosse League will write the Petaluma School Board a check for that amount, with the flexible stipulation that the school board apply that money as it sees fit, ostensibly to help boast underfunded sports programs at the city’s two high schools.

“Some people may call it a bribe,” Samet said. “I don’t think I would use that word.”

A sweetener, perhaps?

“That might be a better word,” Samet said.

A sweetener so that the school board and the administrators at the two schools may relax their defenses, wash away their fears and elevate these two club teams to CIF status next year.

Which would lead to the third reason: Samet and Spores, the PYLL president, are at the point of the spear, relentlessly thrusting lacrosse into the consciousness of the school board and school officials. Elevate it to a CIF sport, please. No good reason to deny.

“They want to be safe,” Spores said, “and not to be placed in a bad light if it fails. They are afraid of failing. I don’t have a lot of faith in them (school board) at all.”

If that sounds like the voice of exasperation, it’s the product of a two-year battle and counting. The PYLL is in its fifth year, with Samet and Spores turning up the flame the last two years as they felt Petaluma lacrosse had reached self-sustainability.

The organization was in place, running smoothly. Fund-raising now has $40,000 in the bank. Once with only 70 kids on the field, PYLL now has 375. Once with only four teams, it now has 16. It has youth programs beginning at 11. That’s why they thought that $20,000 “sweetener” would attract attention, if not to soften the hard realities of an economically challenged school district.

“Now if the check had been for $750,000 to resurface Durst Field,” said Troy Sanderson, school board president, “no … I’m only kidding, I would never ask them for that. Fact is, it doesn’t change the actual problems, doesn’t address the actual issues.”

Liability questions have been raised. Staffing issues have been raised. Medical supervision issues have been raised. Maintenance issues have been raised. Playing site issues have been raised.

Popularity issues have been raised: Of 2,079 California high schools, only 173 play CIF lacrosse. Funding issues have been raised, such as financially strapped parents reducing or even abandoning their donations. Commitment issues have been raised, as Casa and Petaluma are the only Sonoma County League schools playing club lacrosse.

“They really present false barriers,” Spores said.

So, the arguments for and against remain the same, a battleground in which there has been little advancing in the last two years.

Only two things have changed: Petaluma lacrosse attaining a higher profile because of that $20,000 check and its two teams playing for a chance to play for the state championship this weekend.

Of course, to be fair, being a state club champion in lacrosse is not the zenith of the lacrosse experience in California. Only 36 club teams remain in the state, and the number becomes smaller each year.

The two teams Petaluma and Casa beat last weekend, they represent four high schools that will play CIF lacrosse next year. It is a feather in their cap that Petaluma and Casa won by not merging into one team while each beat a club team that did. It is, however, a small feather.

“We want to face better competition,” Samet said. “That’s the big reason we want to go CIF.”

Ironic, isn’t it, that a club sport doesn’t supply the best competition in California, when in almost every other sport in this state the club brand is much preferred over the high school variety.

Club volleyball, club soccer, AAU basketball, summer league baseball are just a few sports that gather more attention and college recruitment than their high school counterparts.

“In two years,” Spores predicts, no club lacrosse teams will exist in the state. They will have either moved up to CIF or vanish. The parents, he predicts, will tire of making considerable time and funding commitments that won’t result in CIF status.

If two years indeed represents the endgame, then Todd Samet and Ted Spores should have one and only one immediate goal. They need for school officials to feel what they feel, that caffeine rush, that lacrosse rush, something strong and powerful to keep you up at night.

For more on North Bay high school sports go to Bob Padecky’s blog at padecky@pressdemocrat.com. You can reach Staff Columnist Bob Padecky at 521-5490 or bob.padecky@pressdemocrat.com.

http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20090528/NEWS/905289894/1326/ENTERTAINMENT09?Title=Petaluma-Casa-lacrosse-teams-in-state-of-crisis

Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) Names Stanford’s Maris Perlman (D) And Lauren Schmidt (M) To West/Midwest All-Region First Team


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West/Midwest Region

First Team

Shaylyn Blaney, Notre Dame, So., M

Ashley Boccio, Penn State, So., D

Shannon Burke, Notre Dame, Sr., D

Alicia Burkhart, Oregon, Sr., M

Jillian Byers, Notre Dame, Sr., A

Sarah Downing, Vanderbilt, Jr., A

Meredith Frank, Northwestern, Sr., M

Cara Giordano, Vanderbilt, Sr., M

Kelly Haggerty, Ohio State, Jr., A

Morgan Lathrop, Northwestern, Sr., GK

Alex Mundy, Vanderbilt, Jr., D

Hannah Nielsen, Northwestern, Sr., A

Maris Perlman, Stanford, Sr., D

Lauren Schmidt, Stanford, Jr., M

Gina Scioscia, Notre Dame, Jr., A

Kerry Shea, Penn State, Sr., M

 Second team

Ally Carey, Vanderbilt, Fr., M

Julie Christy, Stanford, Jr., M

Stephanie Ellis, Penn State, Jr., GK

Ali Flury, Denver, Jr., M

Bergan Foley, Louisville, So., A

Meghan Frederick, Duquesne, Jr., A

Rachel Guerrera, Notre Dame, Jr., D

Kendall Gysin, Ohio State, Sr., D

Denna Faye Herald, California, Jr., D

Alayna Markwordt, Ohio State, Fr., A

Karen Morton, Denver, Sr., M

Anna Poponyak, Oregon, Sr., GK

Sam Price, California, Sr., A

Laura Simanski, California, Sr., A

Alex Tickner, California, Jr., M

Ashley Wood, Duquesne, Sr., M