When you consider all he’s accomplished already in his high school lacrosse career, it seems hard to believe Ryan Hunter still has two more varsity seasons remaining.
The Syosset junior attackman was his team’s leading scorer both as a freshman and sophomore. Hunter, who has scored 63 goals during that span, has helped the Braves make back-to-back appearances in the Section 8 semifinals at Hofstra both year.
Hunter also received Nassau all-county and academic all-county honors last season.
After weighing offers from several major Division I programs, Hunter has given a verbal commitment to attend Ohio State University.
Here’s a Q&A with Ryan on his commitment.
What were the main factors in your decision to attend Ohio State?
I felt Ohio State is a school I would choose even if I didn’t play lacrosse. I loved the big-time football school atmosphere and though it is a huge school it seemed really easy to get around. Coach (Nick) Myers spoke to me about the team being a close family and what they are building at Ohio State and where they see an opportunity for me as a lefty attackman. I knew right then in his office that this is where I wanted to play lacrosse.
When I toured “The Ohio State University” campus it felt like I was visiting an NFL training facility, from the weight room and training room to the locker room and the new lacrosse stadium. They even have an indoor turf full field with bleachers to practice and play games in when the weather is bad. I went to the football game with 105,000 screaming, jumping fans and the coaches brought me down on the field during warm-ups. I sat 10 rows up at the 20-yard line. It was an amazing experience.
What other schools were you considering and what schools did you visit?
I got about 20 letters and e-mails on Sept 1. But it came down to Notre Dame, Lehigh, Maryland, Cornell and Stony Brook
What adjustments do you think you will need to make to play at the next level?
Getting more time in the weight room, lifting and speed training. On the field I want to work on my dodging and feeding.
What are your strengths as a player and how would you describe your style of play?
My stick skills and my ability to play off the ball and score. Ground balls are also a real big part of my game as well.
What players have you looked up to as you have moved up through the varsity ranks?
I’ve trained over the past few years with Jared LeVerne (Stony Brook) and we are still close. Matt Danowski really helped me take my scoring to the next level. As a freshman playing varsity there were a lot of upperclassman that I looked up to like Eddie Loftus (Duke) and Doug Tesoriero (Cornell) and Thomas Keith(Cornell).
When did you first realize you had the potential to play at the college level?
I think I knew I wanted to play college lacrosse when I was in the seventh grade. My high school coach, Coach (John( Calabria, has really helped me get to the next level in becoming a D-I lacrosse player.
Other than lacrosse what other extracurricular activities do you participate in?
I have recently been appointed the student executive vice president of volunteer Recruitment and Fundraising for the Braves Lax Chapter of Ascent Youth Alliance’s “BraveGoals4Autism & BraveSaves4Autism” programs. The Braves LAX Chapter, along with other student volunteers of AYABA and 4BOYZ Autographs to Battle Autism, will be helping local children impacted by autism reach their full potentia; by not only raising funds needed but by promoting awareness, tolerance and acceptance as well.
We will be asking for sponsors to pledge 25 cents for every goal scored and/or every save made during our 2011 lacrosse season. We will be splitting all donations evenly between our team spring trip fund and AYABA. Further information on how you can help the Braves LAX Chapter to “make a difference” can be found by logging on to www.ayabany.org, or searching “BraveGoals4Autism” on Facebook. I also will be creating my own “Event Page” on Facebook as well.
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