By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 8/17/09
It came as little surprise to Philadelphia lacrosse followers that Inside Lacrosse ranked three Philly goalkeepers among the top seven in the nation in its list of top incoming freshmen for 2009-10.
The rankings came out in the September issue, which reached subscribers this weekend. La Salle’s Niko Amato (rated No. 1, headed to Maryland), Haverford School’s Dan Wigrizer (No. 4, headed to Duke) and Episcopal Academy’s Matt Lerman (No. 7, headed to two-time national champion Syracuse) formed a trio of goaltenders that went unmatched by any region.
Phillylacrosse.com recognized all three goalies by naming them to the First-Team All-Phillylacrosse.com squad. Also, each was named as an Honorable Mention pick for Player of the Year.
Last year Amato was the Phillylacrosse.com Player of the Year when he led the Explorers to the first of two state championships. Amato was brilliant again this year, especially in the critical District 12 win over St. Joseph’s Prep (4-3 win) and the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) title win over Conestoga (7-3).
Wigrizer was especially strong in the second half of the season when Haverford School mounted a surge and finished tied with Malvern Prep for the Inter-Ac League crown. Wigrizer then earned the co-Star of the Game honor when the Fords dumped the Friars, for the first Inter-Ac playoff championship.
Lerman was the focal point of an upstart EA team that finished one game behind Haverford School and Malvern Prep in the Inter-Ac race. Until the post-season, many felt he was the top goalie in the area.
Highlights from Inside Lacrosse magazine’s recruiting issue
*Philly had four players rated among the top 29 for incoming freshmen men’s college recruits.
*Former Temple standout and Spring-Ford graduate Mandee O’Leary, the coach at first-year Florida, had the top-rated incoming class with 24 players and seven Under Armour All-Americans.
* Philly had seven players among the top 50 in the list of Young Guns Rising Juniors – three of which attend Haverford School.
*North Carolina’s Emily Garrity (Strath Haven) and Radnor’s Sam Ellis (Princeton) were among the top18 incoming freshmen women’s college recruits.