Most college-bound lacrosse players remember when they first chose to play the sport.
Mike O’Connor does too. But in his case, the word “chose” may not exactly fit.
You see, the senior attackman/midfielder at Ossining High School (N.Y.) is the nephew of two former Yorktown High School All-Americans who went on to play at Army: Rob Hoynes (YHS Class of ’81, West Point Class of ’85) and Mike Hoynes (YHS Class of ’84, West Point Class of ’88).
“I was the first boy in my family, so they got me started playing at a really young age,” O’Connor said.
It’s worked out pretty well for O’Connor, who earlier this week committed to play at Division III power SUNY Cortland, a verbal first reported when it was made by Joe Lombardi on LaxLessons.com’s Lacrosse Insider special coverage section.
The 5-foot-11, 175-pound is versatile (he plays attack at Ossining and midfield for the Prime Time travel team) and an outstanding athlete (he also plays football). He is tough and aggressive and enjoys contact and delivering hits.”I’m a downhill runner that can beat my man one-on-one and see the field to find the open man,” he said.
O’Connor played for Prime Time 2014 and went to Tri-Lax, NYLA Showcase, Battle of the Hotbeds, King of the Hill and MVP showcase.
What were the main factors in your decision?
The academics, the facilities and the coaches where very professional and enthusiastic. Plus lacrosse team is consistently in the top5 in the nation and I’m looking to win a championship.
What other schools were you considering and what schools did you visit?
I had narrowed it down to LIU Post (former C.W. Post) and Cortland.
What area of your game do you need to work on?
I need to work on everything. All aspects of my game need improving, and I have all the confidence that (SUNY Cortland Head) Coach (Steve) Beville and (SUNY Cortland Assistant) Coach (Nick) Fiorentino can help me with it.
Any final thoughts?
I want to thank my late grandfather, who helped me every step of the way before passing away this January.
Also, thanks to the Prime Time coaching staff and Director Nick Daniello, my varsity coach, Mark Hallinan, and the my teammates who really made me better: Justin Davidov, Chase Midgley and Mike Pappalardo, who will be committing soon as well.
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