Those were among the schools Ryan Keenan considered before making his college choice.
Keenan, a sophomore lefty attackman at Smithtown West, decided on Penn State.
Keenan made an immediate impact on the Bulls’ varsity squad last year, starting after his brother, current Duke freshman Kyle Keenan, was sidelined with a concussion.
The younger Keenan then went on to excel in several summer showcase events, earning the No. 17 spot on Inside Lacrosse’s Young Gun Sophomore Watch List.
Now, here’s a Q&A with Ryan on his commitment.
What were the main factors in your decision?
First, the excellent coaching staff led by (Head) Coach (Jeff) Tambroni, (Assistant) Coach (Peter) Toner and (Assistant) Coach (Chris) Doctor.
The players on the team were great and when I visited Penn State, I knew this was the place I wanted to be. Penn State also has top lacrosse facilities and I am excited to play on their new lacrosse field in three years.
Academics was also a big part of my decision. It has top academic standards that fit my profile.
What other schools were you considering and what schools did you visit?
I also visited Duke, Cornell, Johns Hopkins, UNC, Maryland and Virginia.
What are your strengths as a player and how would you describe your style of play?
My lacrosse IQ, quickness, dodging ability and the ability to find the open man.
You are from a lacrosse family. How has that influenced your growth as a player?
It definitely helps having my dad (Sean), he has great knowledge of the game and even though he won’t be Smithtown West’s coach this year, he will always be my coach. Growing up having my dad and my brother, Kyle (Duke University freshman) has helped my game to become what it is today, and it will continue to grow because I am in a lacrosse-oriented family.
What areas of your game will you look to improve on in your three remaining varsity seasons?
In the next three seasons, I will be working on all parts of my game. I am putting emphasis on my strength and my right hand.
What are the team’s goals for 2012, and how would you size up this year’s team?
This year, we have a new coaching staff, but our goal remains the same and that is to win a state championship. This year we have a very strong offensive group and our defense is young but extremely solid.
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Player’s perspective archive
* If you’re a player from the region and would like to share your perspectives on the 2012 season, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can check out the more than 100 stories by clicking here.
* For a look at how schedules for teams from throughout the region for the 2012 season are shaping up, be sure to check out the “Schedules galore” thread.