Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 9/1/08
A contingent of six student-athletes from Philadelphia heads Penn State’s incoming men’s freshmen class, which was ranked No. 5 among Division I recruiting groups by Inside Lacrosse.
The Nittany Lions’ list includes:
*Midfielder Matt Mackrides (Newtown Square, Malvern Prep) is the younger brother of former Nittany Lion standout Andrew Mackrides, and is considered one of the nation’s top recruits.
One of three Under Armour All-Americans in the class, Mackrides was a two-time high school All-American at Malvern, a three-time All-State selection and a first-team All-Phillylacrosse.com pick in 2008. He was a member of the USA Under-19 World Championship team that claimed the world title this past summer.
*Conrad Ridgway (Audubon, La Salle), a 5-10, 185-pound midfielder, is also considered one of the country’s top newcomers. An Under Armour All-American and high school All-American, he was a two-time All-State pick and a second-team All-Phillylacrosse.com choice who led the Explorers to the state title this year.
*Alex Gannett (Downingtown, Downingtown East) is a 6-1, 190-pound defender who earned high school All-American and was a two-time all-state pick as well as a three-time all-league selection. He helped the Cougars win the 2007 state championship.
*Mike Vandergrift (Jenkintown, Abington High), a 6-1, 195-pound, midfielder earned all-state honors twice while being a three-time all-league pick.
*Ryan McGarvey (Lower Gwynedd, Penn Charter), a 6-1, 205-pound, defender, was a two-time all-Inter-Ac League pick as well as an all-league defensive end for the school’s football team.
*Billy Davis (Berwyn, Conestoga), a 6-3, 215-pound defender, comes to Penn State from Millersville University where he enrolled last year to play football for the Marauders. Davis was an all-league lacrosse player at Conestoga and earned all-league honors in football three times.
The other two recruits are:
*Steven Rastivo (South Setauket, N.Y.) was also an Under Armour All-American for Ward Melville High School as one of the nation’s top recruits. The talented 5-10, 160-pound goalie, was a high school All-American, a three-time all-league selection, a two-time All-Suffolk County pick and won a Long Island Empire team gold medal. Rastivo’s play in the Under Armour All-American game earned him game Most Valuable Player laurels this past summer as well.
*Ryan Link (Englewood, Colo.) comes to Penn State from Cherry Creek High School in Colorado. Link was an all-league selection twice for CCHS. The 6-4, 190-pound, attacker was also an all-league basketball player.
Princeton earned Inside Lacrosse’s top ranking, followed by Virginia, Maryland, Syracuse and Penn State. North Carolina, Georgetown, Navy, Albany and Denver rounded out the top ten.
The group of Philly freshmen joins a Lions team already stacked with Philadelphia talent playing major roles. The list includes senior goalie and honorable mention All-American Drew Adams (Springfield-Delco), senior attacker and leading scorer Rob Forster (La Salle) and sophomore defender Matt Bernier (Malvern Prep).
In addition, there are 10 other Philly players who saw time last year and are returning, as well as attacker Jack Forster (La Salle), a highly-ranked recruit last year who missed his senior year due to a knee injury. Jack Forster is the younger brother of Rob Forster and the older brother of Randy Forster, an incoming senior at La Salle who also has committed to Penn State.
Penn State will take part in two October tournaments this fall as well as hosting its annual Alumni game. Penn State will take part in the Blue Jay Classic on Oct. 5 in Baltimore and the Colleluori Classic at Ridley High on Oct. 11. It hosts its Alumni Game on Friday, Oct. 17.