The rising senior for Lakeland/Panas has achieved attention throughout the region for his excellence in the faceoff X.
It didn’t happen overnight.
Monteferante, who started playing lax as a third-grader, didn’t start taking faceoffs until six years later.
But through hard work and dedication, he quickly established himself as one of the best at that craft in the Hudson Valley and beyond.
After one more season at Lakeland/Panas, the throwback, two-way midfielder will be playing his college lacrosse close to home, at West Point.
The 5-foot-8, 180-pound Monteferante has given a verbal commitment to join Joe Alberici’s program at Army.
The versatile Monteferante, who is preparing for his final varsity soccer season with Lakeland, reflects on becoming a Black Knight.
As you’ll see, his decision involves plenty more than lacrosse.
What were the main factors in your decision to attend Army?
There were many things that factored into my final decision to Army. One was the fact that I will be able to serve my country, which was something I have been thinking about doing since I was a child.
Also I enjoyed learning about history, especially military history, and there may not be a better place to learn about history than West Point. Another factor is concerning my future. After you graduate you have a guaranteed income and after your five years of service, you have a almost guaranteed job anywhere you apply to. All of this plus a top tier Division I lacrosse program.
What other schools were you considering and what schools did you visit?
My recruiting process was very long because there where so many great programs with so many great coaches. I only visited Binghamton, Drexel, CW Post and Army. Each visit was just as impressive as the last. No one made it easy.
At Drexel, the assistant coach, Chris Collins was a Lakeland alumni and his brother Drew currently plays on the team and I know him from soccer alumni games and lacrosse. At CW Post, my former gym teacher and a former Lakeland/Panas coach, Coach (Frank) Vitolo was recruiting me to play there. Those close ties made the decision even more difficult. But once I made my decision, all the coaches were very supportive and I am very thankful for that.
What adjustments do you think you will need to make to play at the next level, and what do you think your role will be at Army?
I am very critical of my game and always find room for improvement. In Division I lacrosse, I will need to make sure I can speed up my game, improve my shot and overall just keep getting better and keep working hard every day.
As for my role at Army I’m not sure, I think I won’t have just one role, I will play a more traditional two-way midfielder role. I might take a faceoff or go on the wing if we win possession, trap that faceoff specialist on the field, or if we lose, play defense until we have to clear, run the field in transition and trap those offensive players on their defensive end, maybe play some man-down defense, clearing team, riding team. I’m not sure. No matter what role I play at Army, you’re not given anything. You are going to have to earn it. That’s just the way the coaches run the program. So I will work as hard as I can and see what happens.
What are your strengths as a player and how would you describe your style of play?
One thing I take pride in about my game is my versatility. I may not be the biggest, the strongest, the fastest, have the best shot, or play the best defense, but I do everything fairly well.
Like I said before, I play with a more traditional two-way midfielder feel. I think I play the best in transition situations, pushing the play from defense to offense and capitalizing on trapped offensive players or in scramble situations.
My summer team was filled with players that understand the game and we could push the ball and usually get a very good shot off and if not set up an offense where all six players on the field can beat the man in front of them and cause a defense to slide and into a rotation which again we would usually capitalize on. I can see my role on my summer league team to be similar to the one I might see at Army, filling our gaps while attacking the other teams gaps.
When did you first start playing lacrosse and how did you get into taking faceoffs?
I started playing lacrosse when I was in third grade. Our coaches insisted that everyone get to play every position because we were young and who knows if someone who wanted to play defense could end up being a very good attack man. I ended up taking faceoffs and just kept taking them year after year.
It was not until the end of my freshman year when Coach (Jim) Lindsay told me to work on faceoffs because he wanted me to be the faceoff man the next season. I ended up working with Coach Alfredo Meola who recently won a state championship coaching Ridgefield with Roy Colsey. He worked with me, gave me some drills to do and really made the difference. Now faceoffs are a key factor in my game. It has gotten my name in the paper and was a factor in helping me get recruited.
When did you first realize you had the potential to play at the D-I level?
If I had to put a single date I would say when Roy Colsey was the head coach of Greeley, he had a vision to turn his summer camps into a summer team as well. So he got a bunch of players from Greeley and all over Section 1 to go to a tournament at Hofstra during the fall. At that time I was in seventh grade playing against seniors. It was scary but I held by own and lot of kids on the team where shocked to hear I was only a seventh grader. That tournament gave me some confidence and I guess was a pivotal point in my career.
* For more info on Chris, check out his player profile by clicking here.
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