By Matthew De George & Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 11/8/10
Philadelphia was in the spotlight Sunday at the Quaker Fall LaxFest at Radnor as 16 of the top boys’ club teams in the Mid-Atlantic Region and Canada competed in one of the season’s most noteworthy recruiting tournaments.
And don’t think Philly players didn’t notice the importance of proving their mettle in front of a stunning array of college coaches.
“It’s great to be able to play against teams from around the country, and also we played a team from Canada, which was pretty cool,” said Rebel Elite defenseman Carl Lampe, an Episcopal Academy senior who has committed to Lafayette College. “There’s some good competition out here. We played some local teams that were really competitive.”
Rebel Elite was one of seven Philly teams in the tourney. Others were the Duke’s L.C., Twist 2012, LB3, HEADstrong Elite, Mesa Fresh and Mesa Select. The tourney also had teams from Long Island, Maryland, New Jersey and upstate New York.
The event drew more than 100 coaches from 79 colleges. Many of the top Division I coaches were on the sidelines.
“Individually, this is a big recruiting tournament,” said Twist’s Steffen Gratch, a junior attackman from the Hun School (N.J.) who resides in Holicong, Bucks County. “There’s a lot of coaches here.
“You’ve got to play well and be as aggressive as you can. The goal of this tournament obviously is to get looks. You’ve just got to leave everything out on the field.”
Added Duke’s L.C. defenseman Austin Pifani (Abington sophomore): “We want to push ourselves against the teams in our area and see where we are against them.”
Rebel Elite coach Harry Sankey said the tourney was a great test for the Philly club teams.
“Being that some of the top teams are from the Philadelphia area, one it’s a matter of pride, so you want to show well,” he said. “You don’t want to be embarrassed. The bottom line is that it’s a recruiting tournament for the college coaches to see the uncommitted players.
“The teams are supporting both committed and non-committed, so it’s a fine line how long you keep players in to satisfy both venues. I think we’re handling it pretty well.”