Northport has a big week coming up.
The unbeaten Tigers play defending New York Class A state champion West Islip on Monday, April 15, before ending the week Saturday at Smithtown West, which is also unbeaten.
If Northport is to continue to contend for the top spot in ultra competitive Suffolk County Class A, Rocco Sutherland will be a big reason why.
The attackman, who has been a key contributor to the Tigers’ success this season, is coming off a two-goal, one-assist outing in a 16-8 win over Sachem East.
While Sutherland’s sophomore season has not yet hit the midway point, he has decided where his college destination will be, giving a verbal commitment to the University of Maryland.
Sutherland, originally a midfielder, is a speedy and athletic feeder known for his unselfish style of play.
What were the main factors in your decision?
I really wanted to go somewhere that I would have the chance to play in the national championship every year and Maryland being there (in the national final) the last two years made it a clear choice. Maryland is known for its academic excellence and lacrosse tradition. I hope to contribute to that tradition during my four years.
What other schools were you considering and what schools did you visit?
Georgetown, Yale, UPenn, UMass, Delaware and Boston University.
What are your strengths as a player and how would you describe your style of play?
I use my speed and athleticism more than anything, I’m more of a feeder than shooter and I always try to get the best look whether it’s for myself or my teammates.
What area of your game do you need to work on?
My behind-the-net dodging. This is my first year at attack. I was originally a middie, so I usually just use my athleticism to get around my defenseman. But with more experience at my new position I’m hoping I will improve on it.
How did you get introduced to lacrosse and what other sports have you played?
My older brother George played and just like any other little brother, you want to follow them and be just like them. I’ve loved the sport since the first time I picked up a stick.
What travel team did you play on last summer and what showcase events did you participate in?
I played on the Long Island Outlaws coached by Pat Brennan. I played in the Long Island Showcase, Philly Showcase all-star team, attended Jake Reed, Maverik Showtime and FLG in 3D .
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