When Blake Tyndall first started playing lacrosse as a third-grader, it wasn’t nearly as popular in his home state of Texas then as it is now.
And his friends let him know it.
“Being from Texas, I’ve caught some grief over the years for having my lacrosse stick with me so much,” he said.
But that dedication and devotion to the sport have helped him emerge as one of the leading players from beyond the Northeast and one of the top faceoff middies in the Class of 2016.
Tyndall’s longtime love of lacrosse has helped him become a soon-to-be major Division I player. The standout from Vandegrift High School in Austin, Texas, has verbally committed to the University of North Carolina, a decision first reported by Joe Lombardi on LaxLessons.com’s Lacrosse Insider premium coverage section.
Tyndall said he plans on attending a post-grad school to be determined before enrolling at UNC with its 2017 class of commits.
“I am excited about the PG year,” Tyndall said. “I look at it as a chance to develop my game and prepare to make the jump to the demands of D-I lacrosse and academics.”
Tyndall played football from second grade through last year, but decided to focus his efforts on lacrosse.
“I had to walk away from football this fall to pursue lacrosse given the number of fall tournaments I played in,” he said. “As you might guess, it is tough if not impossible to play football in Texas a travel almost every fall Friday through Monday.”
After performing well at several showcase events this past summer, he drew a large amount of D-I interest. The 5-foot-11, 175-pound righty attended the UNC Team Camp and the Denver Shootout, both held in July, and made the all-star game at both events.
A Texas all-state selection, he was Vandergrift High School’s varsity MVP.
You can watch his highlight reel here.
Now, here’s a Q&A with Blake on his commitment.
What were the main factors in your decision?
I’ve loved UNC since elementary school. And after playing there this summer and getting to know (North Carolina Head) Coach (Joe) Breschi and (Assistant) Coach (Chris) Feifs, I knew for sure it was where I wanted to be. I was surprised at how tough the decision became after getting to know (Maryland Head) Coach (John) Tillman at Maryland and (Loyola Assistant) Coach (Steve) Vaikness at Loyola, though.
What other schools were you considering and what schools did you visit?
Maryland, Loyola and Denver.
What are your strengths as a player and how would you describe your style of play?
I think I benefit on faceoffs from my hand speed and quickness. I also think my speed helps generate good fast break opportunities.
What area of your game do you need to work on?
I work on faceoffs every day to get quicker and develop more tools. I am also working on shooting on the run from both sides.
How did you get introduced to lacrosse and what other sports have you played?
I started playing in the third grade and loved the sport from the beginning. In addition to lacrosse, I’ve played football, basketball, soccer and ran track.
What travel team do you play on what showcase events did you participate in?
Dallas Select, Long Island Sting and Team Texas/C2C.
Recent Tournaments I played in are: Denver Shootout, UNC Team Camp, Quaker Laxfest, Harvard Crimson Classic, FLG in 3d, Uplax and Jake Reed Blue Chip at UMBC in the summer of 2012.
Any final thoughts?
First, I thank God for blessing me with the opportunities I’ve had over the last few years. I also want to thank my parents for encouraging and supporting me. And I’d like to thank all of my lacrosse coaches who have pushed me to work hard and get better: my high school coach and mentor, Pat Huskins at Vandegrift; Anthony Crimmins and Kyle Saunders at Dallas Select; Ken Miller at Long Island Sting; and Andy Garrigan, Kyle Loda, John Marano and Andy Pons at C2C.
I’d also like to thank my trainer Scott Woolwine at Wild Basin Fitness.
And thank you to a few coaches who had faith in me early on: Dave Lapin, Tom O’Grady and Kyle Anz.
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Posted In: Beyond the Northeast, Recruiting Rundown, Texas lacrosse
Wow! So proud of you bud. I always knew you and ET would make it big sooner rather than later. Keep up the hard work!