At 6-foot-1, 195 pounds, Nick DiPietro has ideal size for a major Division I defenseman.
He’s also hard-nosed, athletic and has a high lacrosse IQ.
Add good range and strong stick skills, foot speed and field vision and it’s not surprising he’s regarded as one of the top 2016 players on Long Island.
Earlier this week, the Half Hollow Hills East standout decided where his college destination will be, giving a verbal commitment to Syracuse University, a defenseman first reported when it was made by Joe Lombardi on LaxLessons.com’s Lacrosse Insider premium coverage section. You can watch his highlight reel here.
DiPietro, a righty, performed well at both the Maverik Showtime Lacrosse National Recruiting Spotlight and the Jake Reed Nike Blue Chip showcases. He was Hills East’s varsity rookie of the year as an eighth-grader in 2012.
Other tristate 2016 commits for ‘Cuse have come from Cullen Morgan (Fox Lane, NY, midfield); Jamie Trimboli (Greece Athena, NY, midfield) and Danny Varello (Smithtown West, NY, midfield).
Now, here’s a Q&A with Nick on his commitment.
What were the main factors in your decision?
I felt that I needed a a school that provided strong academics while still having a great lacrosse program. Syracuse had it all. The coaches and lax tradition are amazing. I feel honored to go play for (Syracuse Head) Coach (John) Desko, who is one of the most respected in the NCAA. I felt it was the right fit for me.
What other schools were you considering and what schools did you visit?
I visited and seriously considered Virginia, Harvard, Notre Dame, Penn State and Lehigh.
What are your strengths as a player and how would you describe your style of play?
Although I’m pretty good at one-on-one defense, my strength is getting the ball off the carpet and pushing transition. I also like to get involved in the clearing game. My style is to play fast paced, and push the ball at every opportunity.
What area of your game do you need to work on?
There is always room for improvement in all areas of my game, but one thing I really want to focus on is my communication on defense.
How did you get introduced to lacrosse and what other sports have you played?
My dad and uncle both had played, and loved the game. My dad took me to my first clinic in kindergarten and I fell in love with the sport. I also played football, hockey and basketball in the past.
What travel team do you play on what showcase events did you participate in?
I am currently on the LI Express Barracudas. I played in Maverick Showtime, Jake Reed and Hotbeds last summer. This fall I attended the Philly Showcase.
Any final thoughts?
I would like to thank my parents for supporting and guiding me through this whole process. Also for the countless hours of driving me all over the country to play in tournaments and showcases. I also want to thank all my past and present coaches for all the guidance through the years. A special thanks to my uncle, Steve DiPietro, for all the help with my decision.
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