I talk all the time about the football/lacrosse connection and the synergy between the sports.
If you look at any of the top football teams in the region now, you will find lacrosse standouts.
With the season now under way for many teams (and others set to play their openers this coming Thursday, Sept. 12), what better time to take a look at some of the best?
Here are 30 of the best. Most are midfielders, the position in lacrosse requiring the most athleticism.
* Billy Andrle, East Meadow (N.Y.): He rushed for 1,307 yards and 23 touchdowns as a fullback and had 49 tackles as a linebacker. (Defenseman in lacrosse bound for Marist.)
* Will Bonaparte, Ridgefield (Conn.): One of the top running backs in the Fairfield County Interscholastic Athletic Conference, the 5-foot-10, 190-pound Bonaparte is a powerful runner with good speed. (Midfielder in lacrosse bound for Maryland.)
* Craig Berge, Massapequa (N.Y.): A wide receiver/defensive back, Berge had 51 receptions last season. (Midfielder in lacrosse bound for Georgetown.)
* Jack Burgmaster, Auburn (N.Y.), pictured at right: A three-year starter in football, the wide receiver/safety/punter/kick returner is a team captain and three-year starter, who had 15 tackles in Auburn’s opening game. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to Albany.)
* Micky Carbone, Ridgefield (Conn.): A running back/defensive back, Carbone is an impact player both ways for the Tigers. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to Providence.)
* Laz Chavez, Rye (N.Y.): The senior defensive end sure has the bloodlines. His father, uncles and cousins have all played football at the collegiate or NFL level. Chavez is a versatile runner/receiver on offense. (Defenseman in lacrosse who has committed to Syracuse.)
* Gene Coleman, Bergen Catholic (N.J.): Only a sophomore, Coleman is a sure-handed wide receiver who also plays d-back. Football highlight reel.
* Tim Cousin, Somers (N.Y.): After splitting time at QB with John Decker last year for the defending Section 1 Class B champs, Cousin has starting honors all to himself and led the Tuskers to a season-opener win at Poughkeepsie. (Attackman in lacrosse who has committed to Siena.)
* Mike D’Allesandro, Don Bosco Prep (N.J.): Though sidelined with a torn ACL suffered during lacrosse season in a playoff game against Bergen Catholic, the 6-foot-2, 200-pound senior, a first-team all-county selection, is of the top safeties in the tristate. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to North Carolina.) Here’s his football highlight reel.
* John Daniggelis, Smithtown East (N.Y.), pictured at right: A returning starter at QB, the junior, a threat as a runner/thrower, is a polished performer with a go-all-out style of play. (Midfielder in lacrosse who is likely to commit to an Ivy League program.) Football highlight reel.
* Paul Dilena, Massapequa (N.Y.): The 6-foot-1, 220-pound senior is a powerful RB/LB with a reckless abandon style of play. (Attackman in lacrosse who has committed to Marist.) Here’s his football highlight reel.
* Steve DiMare, South Side (N.Y.): A quick and elusive quarterback/safety, the 5-foot-8 DiMare, a junior, runs a 4.7 in the 40-yard dash. (Uncommitted defenseman in lacrosse.) Football highlight reel.
* Ryan Dunn, Ridgefield (Conn.): Pressed into the starting quarterback spot in Week 3 of last season, Dunn, then a sophomore, threw for 220 yards, and three first-half touchdowns, in a 24-7 win over Stamford. (Attackman in lacrosse.)
* JT Giles-Harris, St. Joseph’s-Montvale (N.J.): The 5-foot-9, 170-pound sophomore has earned a starting spot at cornerback for one of the region’s top programs. This came after a summer in which the Nyack, N.Y., resident made the 2016 Maverik Showtime Lacrosse National Recruiting Spotlight all-star game as a defender.
* Dylan Harned, Newfield (N.Y.): An efficient quarterback, Harned is a precision passer and outstanding field general who also starts as a safety. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to LIU Post.)
* Jack Harrington, Greenwich (Conn.): A senior captain and star lineman for the Cardinals, Harrington was a second-team all-FCIAC selection last season. He’s earned all-state honors two straight years in lacrosse and was a first-team all-FCIAC selection in lax this past spring as a defenseman. (Committed to Duke for lacrosse.)
* Cortland Heneveld, East Hampton (N.Y.): The 6-foot-3 senior quarterback threw for nearly 800 yards and rushed for another 600 last fall. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to Navy.)
* Kurt Holuba, Bergen Catholic (N.J.): This 6-foot-3, 235-pound defenseman in lacrosse is being recruited in football as a defensive end by the likes of Florida State, Wisconsin, Stanford and Duke.
* Jack Korber, Massapequa (N.Y.): The star running back/safety is a versatile player who can do it all. (Attackman/midfielder who has committed to Marist.)
* Ben Kocis, Huntington (N.Y.): The senior quarterback threw for 1,715 yards and 16 touchdowns, connecting on 96-of-166 passes. Kocis finished the season with just three interceptions, with none coming after Sept. 22. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to Binghamton.)
* Conor Mackie, Delbarton (N.J.): The wide receiver/outside linebacker is a two-way force for the Green Wave. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to the admissions process at Yale.) (Football highlight reel.)
* Jake Marino, Harrison (N.Y.): Star running back who had 157 yards on 12 carries in the Huskies’ season-opening win over Brewster. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to UMass.)
* Kyle Mathie, Smithtown West (N.Y.): The wide receiver/free safety is a two-way force for the Bulls. (Defenseman in lacrosse who has committed to North Carolina.)
* Eric Meyreles, Yorktown (N.Y.), pictured at right: RB/DB in football, who is so versatile he can also play QB and WR. (D-middie in lacrosse.) Football highlight reel.
* Tom Reilly, Ward Melville (N.Y.): The 6-foot-2, 185-pound junior is an athletic wide receiver and cornerback.(Defenseman in lacrosse who has committed to the admission process at Cornell.) Here’s his football highlight video.
* Chris Santangelo, Rye (N.Y.): One of the top receivers in the Hudson Valley, the senior is athletic, shifty and speedy. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to Penn.)
* Brandon Stern, Cherry Hill East (N.J.): Now a junior, he’s already a three-year starter at QB. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to Penn State). Here’s his football highlight video.
* Connor Vercruysse, Yorktown (N.Y.): The fullback/linebacker is coming off a strong showing in the Huskers’ season-opening win over Walter Panas in which he gained a career-high 110 yards and scored two touchdowns. Along with Eric Meyreles, other football standouts who also play lax for Yorktown include seniors Austin Fusco (halfback/defensive back; defenseman in lacrosse) and Nicky Bonitatibus (halfback; attackman in lacrosse). (Vercruysse is an attackman in lacrosse headed to Rutgers.)
* Tyler Warner, Baldwin (N.Y.): The senior quarterback is a returning starter who threw for 640 yards last season. (Midfielder in lacrosse who has committed to the admissions process at Yale.)
Lacrosse Insider: College-by-college commitments by class
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