By Chris Goldberg
TopLaxRecruits.com, Posted 7/19/22
NEW CASTLE, Del. – Enzo Grieco was pleasantly surprised to play on a Liberty National Elite showcase team Friday that was unselfish.
“My teammates were very good at getting open,” said the 2024 attackman from Mars Area (PA) and CW Elite. “Normally in the showcase setting there is a lot of 1-on-1 dodging, but my teammates were getting open and working well together. That makes it easy to move the ball around.”
Grieco’s all-around skills at attack flourished in the Victory Events showcase and for his efforts he was named the MVP of an event at Kirkwood Sports that had nearly 300 competitors.
Grieco is hardly an unknown; he scored 81 goals as a sophomore (All-WPIAL, All-Section) for a Mars Area team that went 23-1 and won the Pennsylvania 2A championship in June, the first PA team from the West to win a state title.
“I just wanted to have a good day in front of some coaches,” he said. “I was using my leverage and my body to get around people opponents and getting my hands free to shoot. I was able to use my teammates; they did a good job of getting open.”
As a rising junior Grieco was happy to learn more about the recruiting process and get key tips from college coaches.
“I definitely learned a lot from the coaches,” he said. “They talked about how to win your visit. My Princeton coach answered questions about the recruiting process and the grades we need to get.
“On the field, I learned about placing my shots.”
Grieco said winning the state title – a 9-6 win over Marple Newtown on June 12 – was a dream come true.
“All the success I had was due to the seniors,” he said. “They would beat their man, my man would slide and I would hit one – all that credit goes to them.”
Grieco is excited about the coming Sept. 1 date for juniors to commit.
“Right now my options are very open,” he said. “I am looking for a very high academic school. Academics are first and then lacrosse. I will see where the wind blows on Sept. 1.”
Other positional top vote-getters:
Midfielder Mitch Lanthaler, 2023, Duke’s Elite, North Catholic HS- PA
What were your goals coming in? “My goal was to make sure that I played hard every time I was on the field and to create a lot of offense whether that was scoring or drawing a slide. I felt I did my best to complete those goals. I think I dodged with my head up well which gave me opportunities to either shoot or pass to an open teammate.
What did you learn? “I learned a lot about recruiting, and what coaches want to see from players at a recruiting event.”
College goals? “Academics are at the top for me and winning and competing is important to me, also. I would like to stay on the East Coast.”
Faceoff midfielder Tristen Davis, 2023, True Ohio/National, Cincinnati Country Day-OH
What were your goals coming in? “I felt like I was light on my hands. I was able to clamp the ball and get it to my wings. We were able to initiate fast breaks and get goals out of them. I had good wing play and that helped me get the ball away. I liked that the coaches told me where to get the ball sometimes.
What did you learn? “Some of the drills at this tournament helped me learn to be more physical at the faceoff. It also helped me learn to be more active with my wings, and how to get the ball out better.”
College goals? “I’m just seeing what’s available and where I can go. I am open, location doesn’t matter. I have pretty good academics; I want to go into business.”
Defensive Midfielder Kody Parente, 2024, Team 11, Avon Grove HS-PA
What were your goals coming in? “My goals for this showcase were to both have fun playing lacrosse and to play confident because this was my first showcase and going into it I was nervous but then I just started having more fun and not stressing out as much and I feel like it helped me play better. I performed on both sides on the field, offensively and defensively.
What did you learn? “What I took away was that you don’t need to be perfect on the lacrosse field because everyone will drop a pass or make a bad pass eventually. Also, coaches don’t just look for the player who can dodge through 5 guys and score.”
College goals? “The schools I would like to go to need to put academics over sports. My goal is to make it to an Ivy League school like Princeton, Penn, or Brown. I would prefer the location to be driving distance from PA, too, just so I can still see my family over breaks and such.”
LSM Jonathon Brennan, 2024, Jersey Express. Eastern Regional-NJ
What were your goals coming in? “My main goals were to perform to the best of my ability and showcase all of my skills. I also wanted just to have fun, though, which I definitely did with my teammates and coaches. I had a good day hitting my checks and scooping ground balls. I was also able to force a lot of turnovers and transition the ball to my teammates.
What did you learn? “I picked up a lot of tips from my coaches that helped increase my lacrosse IQ. They were really great with breaking down and going through different situations after I came off the field.”
College goals? “I want to continue my lacrosse playing career at school that’s a good fit for me, whether that’s at the Division 1, 2 or 3 level. As far as a major, I’m undecided right now but I think I’m leaning toward business. Ideally, I would like to find that combination somewhere within a couple of hours of my home in Voorhees, New Jersey.”
Defenseman Tyler Hodowanec, 2023, Duke’s Elite, Academy of the New Church-PA
What were your goals coming in? “Coming in I wanted to put the pressure on the offense and cause chaos and cause turnovers and connect with the coaches. I like making new friends with the players and I always ask the coaches what I can do better after every game – they know at the higher level what I need to do and how to get there.
What did you learn? “I picked up some good tips. I wanted to see what I can do better. I need to keep improving on my footwork and get better hand speed and be able to throw checks while keeping my feet in front of my guy. That’s what some of the college coaches were telling me.”
College goals? “Right now I am going on a lot of visits and making phone calls. I am hoping to commit early in the fall or in the late summer.”
Goalie Jonny Grieco, 2023, True Pittsburgh, Mars-PA
What were your goals coming in? “My first goal was to have fun. And then my next goal was to just play to the best of my ability and let the rest work itself out.”
What did you learn? “They gave us a lot of insights on the recruiting process and visits and I thought that was very valuable. Other than that, there were a couple tweaks that helped out a lot.”
College goals? “Honestly, I am trying to get to the best academic school I can, and have lacrosse help me get there.”