The start of official practice has not yet arrived, but the John Jay Indians are getting ready right now.
And that’s a good thing, because the Indians’ schedule this year demands it.
This year’s showdown is set for Saturday, April 2 at 7 p.m. at John Jay.
The John Jay-Yorktown rivalry reached its peak in 2006 when the Indians became what is believed to be the first team to ever win at Yorktown twice in the same season. The second win, a dramatic overtime victory in the sectional final, snapped a string of eight straight sectional championships by the Huskers and marked just the second time Yorktown has not won a sectional title since 1979. (Yorktown’s loss to Lakeland/Panas in the Class A final last spring was the third sectional-final loss for the Huskers during that span.)
If the Indians, who start the season at No. 21 in the Under Armour/Inside Lacrosse national power rankings, are to pull out a win against Yorktown for the second straight year, senior Jake Weil will undoubtedly have to play a big role.
Weil, an athletic midfielder bound for Dartmouth College, emerged as one of the key players on a John Jay team that won a sectional title for the fifth time in six years.
The 6-foot Weil then enjoyed a noteworthy summer for the Prime Time travel team, which ended with his earning a spot in the rising senior all-star game at the Battle of the Hotbeds Camp at the University of Delaware.
Before facing Yorktown, Weil and the Indians have a much-awaited scrimmage against six-time Connecticut state champ Darien that has generated quite a bit of discussion on this blog as this post – “Who gets the edge – John Jay or Darien?”, featuring 202 comments, attests.
Now, Jake weighs in on both the Darien scrimmage and Yorktown game as he shares his perspective on the season.
What have you been doing to get ready for the season?
I’ve been lifting and running in the gym everyday for the entire offseason. Also, the team as a whole works out together a few times a week in order to be well conditioned for when the regular season comes around. During these we make sure to get some wall ball in so that were incorporating stick skills into everything we do.
On top of that, we practice in full pads in the gym once a week in order to make sure everyone is getting their stick in their hand and staying away from being rusty.
How does your schedule look, including scrimmages, and what games are you looking forward to?
Our schedule this year will be very challenging just like always. From the first game to the last, everyone’s a real competitor and will definitely help us get better as a team.
For our scrimmages, both Delbarton and Darien are prestigious teams that have done very well in the past and will definitely prepare us well for the start of the season. For our regular season, we have a lot of new additions to the schedule and it should be a fun year to go against some new competition.
For out-of-league play, I’m most looking forward to playing San Ramon Valley and Manhasset. For teams in Section 1, I’m most looking forward to playing our usual rivals in Yorktown, Somers, and Lakeland-Panas.
What players on your team do you think will surprise some people this season?
I think that Alex Lanza will surprise some people this year. He’s been a great lacrosse player for a long time now but didn’t receive much recognition as a defender last year. He’s been working real hard and will definitely show that he’s a top defender in Section 1 this year.
Also, Jack Lambert and Tommy Beck are two sophomores who got a lot of playing time as freshman. With a year of experience now, I think that they will show to be even better then they were last year.
What do you think the strength of your team will be this year?
I believe the strength of our team this year will be our experience. On offense, we’re returning all 6 starters from last season and returning 3 or 4 back ups who saw significant time. On defense, all our returning defenders have either started on the varsity level or saw significant time last year as well. Along with this experience, our current team has been playing together for years now and therefore has great team chemistry.
How do you view the race in Section 1 Class B and who do you think the contending teams will be?
The race in Section 1 Class B is not going to be an easy one this year, just as it isn’t any year. With Yorktown coming down and Rye coming up to Class B, the race to a sectional title is going to be more competitive then ever. It’s going to be an exciting May for Section 1 Class B.
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John Jay 2011 schedule
3-26 @ Delbarton
4-5 at Rye
4-9 San Ramon Valley @ Garden City
4-14 at Brewster
4-23 at New Canaan
4-26 at Lakeland/Panas
4-30 at Ridgefield
5-5 PUTNAM VALLEY
5-7 at Massapequa
5-10 at Hen Hud
5-12 at Somers
5-14 IONA PREP
* For schedules for teams from throughout the region, be sure to check out the “Schedules galore” thread, and scroll down to the comments portion for the most recently released schedules.
John Jay-Yorktown results since 2005
John Jay, 8-7
John Jay, 12-6
John Jay, 11-7
John Jay, 10-9 (OT), Class B sectional final
Yorktown, 10-9 (OT)
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