It hasn’t taken Richie Easterly to make his mark on the varsity level in both football and lacrosse.
The sophomore at Westhill High School (NY) in Syracuse earned the starting quarterback job as a freshman. That followed a spring in which, as an eighth-grader, he earned a spot on the man-up unit, before going on to lead the varsity in assists as a ninth-grader.
Couple those feats with a 3.7 grade-point average, and it should come as no surprise that the attackman has verbally committed to defending national champion Loyola, as first reported at Twitter.com/joe_lombardi.
A 5-foot-11, 177-pound righty, Easterly has strong stick skills and field vision with a high lacrosse IQ, attributes on display in his highlight reel.
The fact that lacrosse — and not football — is Easterly’s collegiate sport of choice may come as a surprise to some considering his grandfather, Dick, starred at several positions, including quarterback, on Syracuse’s 11-0 national championship team in 1959.
Easterly’s lacrosse recruiting stock soared after a strong summer with Team United.
Now, here’s a Q&A with Richie on his commitment.
What were the main factors in your decision?
Loyola’s great education, great location and obviously great lacrosse. I really enjoyed getting to know (Loyola Head) Coach (Charley) Toomey and (Assistant) Coach (Matt) Dwan and look forward to playing for them.
What other schools were you considering and what schools did you visit?
I considered and visited Albany, Bucknell, Cogate, Fairfield and Providence.
What are your strengths as a player and how would you describe your style of play?
Good vision, the ability to put pressure on the defense and force slides then find the open man.
How did you get introduced to lacrosse and what other sports have you played?
I started playing lacrosse when I was 5 years old when my parents signed me up for youth lacrosse. I’ve been a varsity starter on the football team since ninth grade.
Who have been some of the biggest influences on you during your development as a player?
My high school coach, Mike Leuze, has coached me since my first year on varsity in the eighth grade and has taught me a lot. When I was young watching Mikey Powell at Syracuse, he always gave me inspiration to strive to be great.
My club coach, Ric Beardsley, taught me the intensity, passion and commitment needed to be successful in this game.
What travel team did you play on and what were some of the big showcase events you participated in last summer?
I play for United Lacrosse for co-directors Ric Beardsley and Steve Carcaterra. I played at Summer Slam, Syracuse Shootout, UPlax and UMass Fall Classic. I will be competing at the Capital Challenge Showcase and Maverik Showtime this coming summer
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