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There aren’t many sports that Riley Stewart hasn’t played.
The sophomore at defending Connecticut state lacrosse champ Darien also plays soccer and basketball for the Blue Wave and played youth football.
But lacrosse, which he started playing as a first-grader in lax-crazed Darien, is where his college future is. He just verbally committed to the admissions process at Brown University.
The 6-foot-1, 160-pound righty is a two-way midfielder who thrives in unsettled situations and who is a strong dodger.
Now, here’s a Q&A with Riley on his commitment.
What was the main factor in your decision?
Academics. I felt that I should use lacrosse to help me get into the best school possible. Brown, being one of the best schools in the nation, was very appealing. They have a very good Ivy League lacrosse program, where I feel I can be an impact player once I start my college career.
I also felt that Coach Lars Tiffany and his staff were a great match for me after spending time on their campus for meetings and camps.
What other colleges did you consider and what schools did you visit?
I was strongly considering Army, Princeton and Yale, while also visiting Harvard and Dartmouth.
How are your strengths as a player and how would you describe your style of play?
I would consider my style of play as very fast. I feel I have a good dodge which allows me to draw a slide and either move the ball or shoot with either hand.
I also love to push the ball in transition, off clears or groundballs, generating fastbreaks with my speed.
What areas of your game do you need to work on?
I definitely could work on all aspects of my game, from dodging, to position defense. Right now I am strictly focusing on weight training, working on my speed, strength, and footwork. I also am working on improving my shot, while trying to generate a few more assists on offense.
I was introduced to lacrosse by the many kids in my school who were involved in Darien’s Blue Wave Buddies. This organization teaches kids in first and second grade the fundamentals of lacrosse. I was proud to be able to coach these kids myself these past two years.
What travel team do you play for and what showcases did you attend and do you plan to attend?
I play for the Connecticut Chargers, and participated in the National 175 Showcase.
I will also attend Maverik Showtime (Summer 2015) and the NXT Showcase (Fall 2014).
Any final thoughts?
I would like to thank my parents for guiding me throughout this process. They have stressed the importance of academics and working hard. I am proud to be going to such a prestigious academic institution like Brown, and feel it will help me once I am done playing lacrosse.
I would also like to thank my four siblings for all of their support. I would especially like to thank my brother Rock, an LSM at Darien, who I have trained countless hours with.
I am extremely thankful to my high school coach, Jeff Brameier, who helped guide me throughout this whole process, and has challenged me to become a better player.
I would also like to thank my past coaches — Paul Burke, Jay Robbins, Jamie Hanford and Chip Buzzeo — for their help.
Lastly, I would like to thank my trainer Zach Dehm at Infinity Fitness.
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