By True Lacrosse 04/01/2017, 2:00pm CDT
By True Lacrosse 04/01/2017, 1:45pm CDT
By True Lacrosse 01/06/2017, 10:00am CST
By True Lacrosse 01/06/2017, 9:50am CST
By True Lacrosse 01/06/2017, 9:45am CST
By True Lacrosse 09/13/2016, 1:15pm CDT
By True Lacrosse 09/08/2016, 2:00pm CDT
By True Lacrosse 09/08/2016, 2:00pm CDT
By True Lacrosse 08/23/2016, 12:15pm CDT
By True Lacrosse 08/18/2016, 1:15pm CDT
Bringing you the True Commitments from January-March 2017! Congratulations to our players who achieved their goal of taking their game to the next level!
Mitchell Baggett (defense, Grand Blanc High School, MI ’18) commits to Rollins College
Mitchell Baggett has committed to Rollins College. Mitchell has been part of True Michigan for the last three years of his eight years playing lacrosse. He is the captain of his high school’s varsity lacrosse team this season for the second season; last year he was also named the most versatile player on his team. In addition to lacrosse, Mitchell plays football, and is a relay-triathlete. He is part of the National Honor Society, two-time Student of the Month, Junior Class Vice President, and he is a member of the Captains Club. He is an Academic Letterman, DECA Regional Finalist, DECA State Merritt Finalist, and was nominated for the National Academy of Future Scientists. Mitchell plans to study international business and finance at Rollins next year. “I chose Rollins because of the amazing coaching staff and the incredible environment. They really took care of me from the first time I met them,” he said. “I’m very excited about getting to the next level and being a part of a team while in college. I can’t wait to see the speed and skill level of college lacrosse.” Mitchell credits True with helping him achieve this goal. “I couldn’t have done any of this without my coaches and teammates at True Lacrosse. They’ve provided me with the tools I need to become a better player and person in general.” He continued, “Traveling with my team has always been my favorite. I love how we can have a ton of fun but also turn on the intensity when we need to. True has always been one of the best programs in Michigan and it felt great the first time I could say I was part of it.” Before committing to Rollins College, Mitchell strongly considered Amherst College, Colorado College, and Lafayette College.
Jack Cain (defense, Hinsdale Central High School, IL ’19) commits to Dartmouth College
Jack Cain has committed to Dartmouth College. Jack has been playing lacrosse for seven years, and four of those with True Illinois. In that time, he has earned a number of honors and awards, including: Captain of Hinsdale Central Varsity Lacrosse Team (2017); All Star Inside Lacrosse National Recruiting #24 Ranked Defenseman, Class of 2019 (October 2016); Brine National Illinois 2019 All American Team Member (2016); West Suburban (Chicago) Conference Honorable Mention as a freshman (2016); Lacrosse America, CST Expo All Star (2015). Additionally, he has been invited to a number of elite events including the 2017 Project 9, the 2017 Committed Combine 44, and the 2017 Blue Chip 225, to name a few. When he isn’t playing lacrosse, the honor student plays basketball and is involved in the Hinsdale Central Business Club. Jack is excited for the next step in his education and lacrosse career. “I chose Dartmouth because of a combination of the following: the high academics, the chance to be part of their new resurgence in Ivy Lacrosse, and the chance to play for Coach Callahan,” he said, adding he is most looking forward to “improving every day as a student and as a lacrosse athlete.” His time with True Lacrosse prepared him for the next level. “True gave me the training necessary to understand how to compete at the highest level.” He continued that his favorite part was “competing out east and proving we belong with the big boys.” Before committing to Dartmouth, Jack strongly considered UMass, Navy, and Hofstra.
Kristofer Casey (face-off, Barrington High School, IL ’18) commits to Furman University
Kris Casey has committed to Furman University. Kris has been playing lacrosse for nine years, the last five with True Illinois. He was a Towson Summer Gold All Star, Elite 100 All Star, Inside Lacrosse All Star, True National team member, First Team All Conference selection, two-time varsity leader in ground balls, and a two-year varsity starter. Additionally, he is a Presidential Service Award recipient. Now he looks forward to playing at the D1 level next year. “Furman is a perfect fit for me both athletically and academically,” he said. “Academically, Furman has a strong business program and the smaller student to teacher ratio will help me succeed in the classroom. Athletically, Coach (Richie) Meade and the rest of the coaching staff are extremely passionate and I know that the team has a bright future.” He continued by saying, “I am most looking forward to the opportunity to play against the best teams in the country under Coach (Richie) Meade. I am also excited for the beautiful South Carolina weather.” Kris’ five years with True Lacrosse helped his game, from training to recruiting. “True helped me through every step of the process. From developing me as a player to showing me the ins and outs of the recruiting process, True was there for me.” He added, “My favorite part about playing for True was the competitive environment and the friends that I have made over the years.” Before committing to Furman, Kris strongly considered Boston University, Amherst, and Vassar.
Kelson Connors (defense, Flint Powers Catholic High School, MI ’18) commits to University of Detroit Mercy
Kelson Connors has committed to the University of Detroit Mercy. Kelson has been playing for True Michigan for the last four years of his five-year playing career. In that time, he earned All State and All Conference honors his freshman and sophomore years; he was an FLG in 3D All Star; Boston Legacy All Star; Fairfield Invitational All Star; Chicago Showcase All Star; and was selected to the True National team. In addition to lacrosse, Kelson was a D1 recruit for football; he was the 2nd leading tackler on the state finalist team as a sophomore. He was voted MLives Top 3 Most Tenacious Linebacker, DZones Top Running Back Watchlist, and made the All State Academic Team. He is also a candidate for the National Honor Society. With his sights set on staying in the Midwest, UDM checked all the boxes in his search for the perfect school. “UDM had the major I wanted and I really liked the official visits and prospect days. The coaching staff was very welcoming and made me feel part of the UDM lacrosse family. I also wanted to play my college lacrosse in the Midwest.” He continued, “I am looking forward to competing against the best talent in the country. It’s a level I worked very hard to get to.” His training with True Michigan prepared him for the high level of competition he’ll face in college. “The fast pace of True’s practices and playing the top level travel clubs in the nation helped prepare me for the fast play of D1 lacrosse. In practices and games I have defended some of the best offensive players in the nation, which definitely helped prepare me. Coach Catzere and the True staff have really helped guide me through the whole recruiting process. They were always there for me answering all types of my questions.” He continued, “The guys in the True program are like brothers to me now. All the travel and practice times we spent together we have formed a strong bond, which will last for years. I have seen many parts of the US that I would not have seen if it wasn’t for True.” Before committing to UDM, Kelson strongly considered UMass, Rutgers, Cleveland State, Ohio State, University of Tampa, and Fairfield University.
Demetre Crews (midfield, Adlai E. Stevenson High School, IL ’17) commits to Michigan State University
Demetre Crews has committed to Michigan State University. Demetre has been playing lacrosse for six years, the last three with True Illinois. Now, he’ll keep with tradition when he attends Michigan State this fall. “Attending Michigan State has become a sort of tradition for my family, and I felt the big school environment as well as the good finance program was right for me,” he said. “I’m excited to meet new people and to move forward to the next stage in my life.” His time with the True North Stars program in Illinois helped Demetre grow his game over the last three years. “True has been great. They’ve helped me with the process but also the coaches have helped me improve my game immensely. I’ve enjoyed becoming so close to all my teammates and coaches, and I plan to stay in touch with them in the future and stay a part of the community.” Before committing to Michigan State, Demetre strongly considered Indiana University and University of Colorado Boulder.
Shaye Fitzpatrick (goalie, Batavia High School, IL ’19) commits to Duke University
Shaye Fitzpatrick has committed to Duke University. Shaye has been a member of the True Illinois Girls program for the last four years of her six-year playing career. She was a UA 150 Under Armour All American (most saves in command division), defensive MVP on the JV boys lacrosse team at Batavia High School, and the JV boys captain. The honor roll student is also Student Council Vice President. Shaye gets to look forward to continuing her education and playing career at Duke in 2019. “I chose Duke because it was the school that I felt would benefit me most during and after my college career. Also because of the coaching staff and amazing team chemistry. I have not decided what my major will be but I plan on going into either the science or medical field.” She continued, “The thing I am most looking forward to would have to be the increased level of competition and the opportunity to play and be coached by some of the best in the nation.” Shaye credits her True Illinois Girls coaches with helping her reach this next step. “True Lacrosse provided me with the best coaches, facilities, and exposure possible. I would not be where I am today with the experienced coaches that have trained me throughout my time at True. My recruiting process was great! Thanks to Coach Rich, Colleen, Jordan, and many others. Because of their direction, suggestions, and connections, I had the best exposure possible.” She added, “My favorite part about playing for True Lacrosse is definitely the love and support from my team and coaches, but also the incredible goalie coaches that made me the player I am today.” Before committing to Duke, Shaye strongly considered Johns Hopkins, Brown, UPenn, University of Richmond, High Point, Quinnipiac, and Drexel.
Stefan Fleps (defense, Wheaton North High School, IL ’17) commits to Vassar College
Stefan Fleps has committed to Vassar College. Stefan has been a member of True Illinois for the last five years of his seven-year playing career. He was named defensive MVP at Wheaton North. The honor roll student also plays soccer, and is a member of the Math Honor Society and the French Honor Society. With plans to study biology, Stefan chose Vassar because it is an “excellent liberal arts college with a high medical school acceptance rate.” He is most looking forward to “pursuing my goal of being a student athlete in an academically challenging environment.” His training with True helped Stefan grow his game. “True offered the most extensive training available and superior coaching. Most notably, Jake Deane provided consistent support throughout my recruiting process. True provided opportunities to compete at high levels, which is essential to be recruited at the college level.” Before committing to Vassar, Stefan strongly considered MIT, Middlebury, UMass Lowell, and Amherst.
John Greer (defense/LSM, Evangelical Christian School, TN ’17) commits to Centre College
John Greer has committed to Centre College. John has been playing lacrosse for 10 years, and the last two with True Tennessee. He has earned All District, Region, and State recognition; he helped his team to win the 2016 TSLA D2 State Championship, and he is the 2017 team captain. In addition to lacrosse, the honors student is also active in football, wrestling, debate team, Model UN, and Boy Scouts. With plans to study computer science and possibly enroll in Air Force ROTC, John is looking forward to the future. “I chose Centre College for many different reasons, but primarily due to its academic prestige, talented lacrosse program, and very nice campus,” he said. “I am looking forward to furthering my education and preparing myself for a career, while also getting the opportunity to play for a talented lacrosse program.” After two years with True Tennessee, John has improved his game and is ready for the next level. “My coaches for True Tennessee, in particular Collin Welsh and LJ Clark, were a huge help in my recruiting process. They helped me hone my skills as a defenseman, while also walking with me step-by-step in the recruiting process. Ultimately, they were a huge factor in helping me decide whether or not Centre College was the right place for me. I cannot express enough the sincere gratitude I have for the entire coaching staff at True Tennessee, and I wish them the best of luck.” He concluded by saying, “My favorite part about playing for True Lacrosse was getting to better myself as a player, while also getting the opportunity to travel to tournaments and play new competition.” Before committing to Centre College, John strongly considered Roanoke College, Giulford College, Berry College, Illinois Wesleyan, and Carthage College.
Charlie Heinz (defense, Lyons Township High School, IL ’19) commits to Boston University
Charlie Heinz has committed to Boston University. Charlie has been playing lacrosse for seven years, four of those as part of True Illinois. The honor roll student also plays football at Lyons Township. His future is bright as he anticipates attending Boston University in 2019. “I chose Boston University because of its reputable academics and their commitment to their lacrosse program,” he said, adding, “I am most looking forward to my continued development as a player while competing against top-level lacrosse programs.” His time with True gave him a personalized experience to improve his game. “True Lacrosse has given me constant practices and training events that I can attend and one-on-one meetings strictly about me as a player that will help me take my game to the next level.” Charlie continued by saying, “My favorite part about playing for True Lacrosse is being able to play at such a high level and also the number of friendships I have made throughout the fall and summer tournaments.” Before committing to Boston University, Charlie strongly considered Towson University.
Ricky Hoover (midfield, Wheaton Warrenville South, IL ’19) commits to Hobart College
Ricky Hoover has committed to Hobart College. Ricky has been playing for True Illinois for the last three years of his seven-year playing career. He is a varsity starter at Wheaton Warrenville South, and earned All Conference honors. He was selected to Jake Reed Blue Chip, and was a Baltimore Summer Kickoff All Star, Towson Summer Gold All Star, and Towson Autumn Gold Standout. He decided on Hobart for its “great academics, campus, and lacrosse program,” adding that he is most looking forward to “getting better and competing everyday. Living and growing close to my teammates.” His tenure with True helped him develop his game to prepare him for college lacrosse. “All the True coaches pushed me out of my comfort zone and made me a better player in every aspect of my game.” He continued by saying that his favorite part of playing for True was “making great friends while playing at a high level.” Before committing to Hobart, Ricky strongly considered Towson.
Abigail Juzwick (defense, Shaler Area High School, PA ’17) commits to Edinboro University
Abigail Juzwick has committed to Edinboro University. Abigail has been playing lacrosse for seven years, five of those with True Pittsburgh Girls. The two-year varsity starter was named most improved player during her sophomore year on her high school team, and earned the Golden Stick award her junior year. Abigail has also played tennis while at Shaler Area High School, and is a member of the Latin Honors Society. This fall, she’ll head to Edinboro to continue her education and lacrosse career. “I chose Edinboro because they had the program for what I wanted to major in, which is education, and the school is not too big or small, which is perfect for me,” she said. “I am most looking forward to the competition at the Division 2 level. I know it will be a challenge for me to be a better lacrosse player. I am also looking forward to playing for a great coach and playing with my new teammates who were all so welcoming at the overnight visit.” After five years with True, Abigail is grateful to the coaching staff, who helped her grow her game. “True Lacrosse helped me because the coaches for my team were always helping us improve during practices and in tournaments. They were passionate about lacrosse and made you want to be a better player. Going on the tournaments, you have so many opportunities to have coaches watch you. I was able to find the school that was a good fit for me because of True.” She added, “My favorite part was going to the tournaments in different states and traveling with teammates.” Before committing to Edinboro, Abigail strongly considered Chatham University.
Jake Leffel (face-off/midfield, Glenbard West High School, IL ’17) commits to Augustana College
Jake Leffel has committed to Augustana College. Jake is a five-year member of True Illinois, and has played lacrosse for nine years. In 2016, Jake was a Chicago Showcase All Star; he was named varsity offensive MVP and leading goal scorer at Glenbard West. In 2015, he was a Top 100 Rising Stars All Star. He chose Augustana to continue his playing career and education for “the small class sizes, the alumni base, and the campus.” He is looking forward to “the faster pace, and being able to continue traveling the country, playing guys from all over.” He credits True with giving him the tools to get recruited, including “how to get in touch with coaches, how to make a resume, and what to put in a good highlight tape.” He added that his favorite part was “getting to travel to the east coast every summer.” Before committing to Augustana, Jake strongly considered Illinois Wesleyan, DePauw, Limestone, and Otterbein.
Andrew Lis (goalie, Brother Rice High School, IL ’17) commits to Clarke University
Andrew Lis has committed to Clarke University. Andrew has been part of True Illinois for all three years of his playing career. The varsity starter at Brother Rice helped his team earn the CCL Title twice during his high school career. With plans to study physical therapy, Andrew is excited to attend Clarke this fall. “I chose Clarke because of the campus and because of the atmosphere of the team. When visiting, the team made me feel like I was already a member,” he said. “I am mostly looking forward to playing and having fun. Being able to compete for another four years is great.” His three years as part of the True Southside program helped develop his skills to prepare him to play at the next level. “True helped me by just making me a better goalie and player overall. I started playing my sophomore year of high school and joined True right after that and it has only helped me get noticeably better.” He continued, “My favorite part of playing for True was definitely the new friends I met. At the start of summer season, you might not know everyone, but by the time fall ball is about to start, you know everyone and can talk to each other.” Before committing to Clarke University, Andrew strongly considered St. Ambrose.
Luke Majick (midfield, Forest Hills Central High School, MI ’19) commits to Furman University
Luke Majick has committed to Furman University. Luke has been playing for True Michigan for the last three years of his ten-year playing career. He was named All Region in 2016, and helped his Forest Hills Central team to state champions that same year. In addition to lacrosse, the honor roll student is also quarterback for his school’s football team. Now, Luke gets to look forward to four more years of lacrosse after his high school career. “I chose Furman for a chance to get a great education in a great area of the country for a prestigious coach in Coach Meade, along with amazing young assistants,” he said, adding that he is looking forward to “playing better competition and competing to win a national championship.” Luke’s three years with True Michigan equipped him with valuable tools for both lacrosse and life. “They helped me develop a great work ethic and taught me to lead and work on every aspect of my game whenever I was in need.” He continued by saying that his favorite part of playing for True was “winning the Sweetlax Tournament last summer and just getting a chance to hang with all of my teammates.” Before committing to Furman, Luke strongly considered Marquette, UDM, Rutgers, UMass, and Richmond.
Sean Mills (midfield, Batavia High School, IL ’17) commits to Queens University of Charlotte
Sean Mills has committed to Queens University of Charlotte. Sean has been a member of True Illinois for the last four years, and has played lacrosse for eight years. The four-year starter was a First Team All Conference selection, named team MVP, and Chicago Showcase and Midwest Top 80 All Star. In addition to lacrosse, Sean also plays football. He will head south this fall to continue his education and lacrosse career at Queens University of Charlotte. “It is a great fit for me considering I have a lot of family close and they have a good business program, which is what I am looking to study in college,” he said. “The thing I am looking forward to the most is just growing, learning, and competing at a higher level while experiencing a new city.” Sean benefitted from working on his game throughout the year with True Lacrosse. “True Lacrosse helped me in many ways, but I think the most important was the year round coaching and training that enabled me to develop as a player over the past four years. Also, the connections between True coaches and college coaches helped me a lot throughout the process.” He added, “My favorite part of True was being able to travel and play against the best teams in the country while making friends and having fun with my teammates.” Before committing to Queens University of Charlotte, Sean strongly considered Rollins and St. Leo.
Trever Moore (attack, Naperville Central High School, IL ’17) commits to Augustana College
Trever Moore has committed to Augustana College. Trever is a five-year member of True Illinois, and has been playing lacrosse for six years. He was a Blue Chip 225 All Star, and in addition to lacrosse, Trever runs cross-country. He is also an Academic All American for cross-country. He plans to study mathematics and secondary education when he attends Augustana this fall. “I chose Augustana because when I visited it felt like home and everyone there was extremely welcoming. I also liked what Augie had to offer academically for me.” He continued, “I’m looking forward to the opportunities that I’ll get academically and the challenge of trying to win a national championship.” The coaches at True helped guide Trever to finding the perfect school for him. “True helped me a lot with the recruiting process. They would answer any question I had and were constantly calling coaches for me,” he said. “My favorite part would probably be traveling out east and playing good competition.” Before committing to Augustana, Trever strongly considered Robert Morris, Arizona State, Tampa, Union, and Nazareth.
Daniel Napier (attack, Henry Sibley High School, MN ’17) commits to Chatham University
Daniel Napier has committed to Chatham University. Daniel has been playing lacrosse for 10 years – one of those with True Minnesota – and has earned a number of awards and honors in that time: All Conference Honorable Mention (2016), Mr. Hustle Award, St. Paul Celts (2015), MVP of the St. Paul Celts (2016), and team captain in 2017. In addition to lacrosse, Daniel also plays hockey, football, and golf, and serves as a youth coach in his free time. The AP student plans to study finance and marketing when he heads to Chatham later this year. “I chose to go to Chatham University because of my interest for lacrosse. I liked the location and size of Chatham,” he said. “I am looking forward to improving my skills while getting a good education. Also, I am looking forward to continuing my passion for lacrosse to a higher level.” His brief time with True Minnesota made the difference in Daniel’s recruitment. “True has helped me by pushing me every day to work on my weaknesses. True has also helped me get exposure at different tournaments this summer. Without True, I would never have started talking to college coaches.” Daniel added, “My favorite part about playing for True was being able to travel across the country to challenge my skills and compete with other talented kids. Another part I loved about playing for True was all the good players and coaches that helped me develop as a person and teammate.” Before committing to Chatham, Daniel strongly considered the University of Missouri, Carthage College, and Hood College.
Jack Parker (defense, Culver Military Academy, IN ’19) commits to Rutgers University
Jack Parker has committed to Rutgers University. Jack has been playing lacrosse for four years, two of those with True Michigan. He was an FLG in 3D Summer Shootout All Star, and when he isn’t playing lacrosse, he participates in basketball and enjoys surfing. Jack felt right at home at Rutgers and is excited to attend in 2019. “I chose Rutgers because when I visited, I could see myself there in a way that I didn’t at any other schools. I love the big school size and know the academics would fit me well. The coaching staff is amazing and the players that I met all loved it there.” He added, “I look forward to consistently playing against the best players in the country. Being pushed in practice and in the classroom everyday. I look forward to seeing different areas of the country and playing on TV.” The coaches at True Michigan helped Jack not only develop his skills but guided him throughout the recruiting process. “When I started with True in the fall of my freshman year, I had never even thought about playing lacrosse in college. I was a good athlete and a below par lacrosse player. I dedicated my time to lacrosse and the coaches at True developed me into the player I am now. I tried out for varsity in the spring of my freshman year (at Forest Hills Eastern) and the varsity coach had never heard of me. I started every game that year. On the recruiting side, the True coaches set up phone calls with coaches and visits to colleges. Without them, I would have never had even close to as much exposure as I did.” He continued, “My favorite part of playing True Lacrosse has been the friends and memories I’ve made. I have met kids from different areas of Michigan that I am now really close with, but would not have met if I hadn’t played True. And I have made some great memories with these guys while traveling out east, hanging out in the hotels, and just having fun at practice.” Before committing to Rutgers, Jack strongly considered Towson and Air Force.
Mitchell Perez (attack, Glenbard West High School, IL '17) commits to Monmouth College
Mitchell Perez has committed to Monmouth College. Mitchell has been a member of True Illinois for the last two years of his seven-year playing career. In addition to lacrosse, Mitchell participates in Football Choir Theater, a stage production. Mitchell chose Monmouth for a number of reasons: "the lacrosse coach, field of study - computer science - and location of the school." He is looking forward to the coaching, competitive play, and camaraderie with the team. He says True Lacrosse "made him a better player, pointed me toward tournaments where college coaches were recruiting," and says his favorite part of True was the "laid back approach yet excellent coaching and training." Before committing to Monmouth, Mitchell strongly considered the University of Dubuque, Alma College, Loyola, and Purdue.
John Pickett (face-off/midfield, Marian Catholic High School, IL ’17) commits to the University of Indianapolis
John Pickett has committed to the University of Indianapolis. John has been playing lacrosse for four years, the last two with True Illinois. He has earned a number of honors in his career including Rookie of the Year, Most Improved Player, All Conference honors, and he was named junior captain of his team. In addition to lacrosse, John is an honor student who is also active in bowling and horseback riding. He plans to study accounting when he attends the University of Indianapolis later this year. “I like the location and the atmosphere of the campus. I am looking forward to a change in the ‘school’ environment, and getting the chance to play lacrosse at a high level.” The coaches at True helped develop John’s skills to prepare him for college lacrosse. “They reached out to different coaches for me for recruiting. They narrowed down on my strengths and weaknesses in training.” He added that his favorite part was “getting the chance to challenge myself on a new level. I got to play with much better guys than the normal high school level.” Before committing to the University of Indianapolis, John strongly considered Limestone College and Maryville University.
Jacob Prinz (face-off, Forest Hills Central High School, MI ’17) commits to University of Detroit Mercy
Jacob Prinz has committed to the University of Detroit Mercy. Jacob has played for True Michigan for the last year of his five-year playing career. In 2016, he was First Team All State Face-Off Specialist, Academic All State, and Forest Hills Central Special Teams MVP. In addition to lacrosse, Jacob also plays football and is a member of the National Honor Society. He plans to study medicine this fall at Detroit. “I chose UDM because it was the best fit for me and gave me the opportunity to play at the highest level,” he said, adding he is most looking forward to “playing against some of the top competition in the country and working together as a team for a common goal.” His True Michigan coaches helped guide him throughout the recruiting process. “They put me out there for the coaches to see and told me what to work on to be recruited.” He continued by saying that his favorite part was “the camaraderie of the team and coaches, and the bonds that were formed from playing together.” Before committing to UDM, Jacob strongly considered Ohio Wesleyan.
Chris Smith (attack, South Elgin High School, IL ’17) commits to Concordia University Wisconsin
Chris Smith has committed to Concordia University Wisconsin. The four-year member of True Illinois has been playing lacrosse for five years, and was named the South Elgin Offensive MVP his junior year, and varsity captain his junior and senior year. Chris has earned high honor roll all four years of his high school career, and is a member of the German National Honor Society. With plans to study actuarial sciences, Chris is excited to attend Concordia next year. “I chose Concordia because the view is great, and I can see myself at the school even if lacrosse wasn’t an option,” he said. “I am looking forward to rooming with a friend I made through the True Lacrosse program, and I really want to get to the next level because I love a challenge.” The True experience provided Chris with even more than excellent preparation to play at the next level. “True Lacrosse helped me throughout my training by giving me someone that has been a great mentor, and someone to look up to, over the last few years in Coach K (Chris Kochajkiewicz).” He added, “My favorite part about playing for True Lacrosse was definitely our trip to Ohio State because it was a great experience for team bonding.” Before committing to Concordia, Chris strongly considered Montevallo, Carthage, and Augustana.
Emory Weaver (face-off/midfield, Christian Brothers High School, TN ’17) commits to University of Alabama in Huntsville
Emory Weaver has committed to the University of Alabama in Huntsville. Emory has been playing lacrosse for five years, the last three with True Tennessee, and has earned several awards and accolades throughout his career, including, Brine Pride of Tennessee West Team; Adrenaline High Rollers Tennessee - Players who impressed; MVP, Christophe Kesterson Memorial Tournament; most recruited player ever out of Christian Brothers High School. Additionally, Emory is an Eagle Scout and member of The Order of the Arrow, which is the scouting’s National Honor Society. Emory plans to study business when he attends the University of Alabama in Huntsville later this year. “I signed with the University of Alabama primarily because of its combined outstanding academic reputation and commitment to excellence in men’s lacrosse. I look forward to playing for Coach McGowan and his staff, who provide a wealth of knowledge and experience and will challenge me to maximize my potential. Associating with the caliber of student athletes that are playing at UAH is an honor.” He added, “Competing for championships are on the horizon at UAH, and I’ll soon arrive on campus and join my future teammates in building on the groundwork they’ve already laid.” After three years with True Tennessee, Emory is ready to compete at the next level. “Playing for True Tennessee gave me the opportunity to gain experience through constant repetition in practices, and then facing elite competition at tournaments sharpened my skills. My True Tennessee coach, Collin Welsh, provided much needed and invaluable direction throughout my recruiting process. I am grateful for his efforts in assisting me and my family in navigating through determining which school was the best fit for me. I can’t thank Coach Welsh and his staff enough for their efforts in helping mold me into the player I am today.” He added, “Traveling across the country with my family and True Tennessee teammates for tournaments was an incredible experience.” Before committing to UAH, Emory strongly considered Virginia Military Institute, University of Montevallo, Bellarmine University, University of Tampa, and Palm Beach Atlantic University.
Frank Zygmuntowicz (defense, Naperville North High School, IL ’18) commits to Rollins College
Frank Zygmuntowicz has committed to Rollins College. Frank has been playing for True Illinois for the last three years of his six-year playing career. He was named captain of his high school team for the 2017 season; earned Honorable Mention All Conference (DVC) last year as a sophomore; he’s a two-time Chicago Cup All Star; Chicago Showcase All Star; Buckeye Battle All Star; and two-time Brine All American. He also earned All-Academic All Conference (DVC) honors. When it was time to decide where to commit, Rollins had everything Frank was looking for in a school. “I chose Rollins because of the beautiful campus, nationally ranked business program, and to play on a competitive team. The coaching staff made me feel at home and the players made me feel like part of the team. It is always nice to be close to a city, and Orlando is only a short 15-minute drive. I plan to do a 3/2 accelerated masters in business with a focus on international business. I am going to study abroad, which will be a great experience. Overall, Rollins filled all aspects I was looking for in academics, athletics, and atmosphere.” He added that he’s looking forward to “meeting lots of new people and continuing to travel across the country playing lacrosse. I want to be a part of a nationally competitive team, and Rollins has improved their record each year.” Frank is grateful to the True coaches who helped him grow his game over the last several years. “Coach Deane and Coach Gabel both helped me to improve my stick skills and my lacrosse IQ. They each helped me with what to do throughout the whole recruiting process. Coach Benages (Naperville North and True Lacrosse) has been a great mentor to me since 7th grade and has encouraged me to be a leader on and off the field. True training has improved all aspects of my game, as well as my athleticism and has reinforced my commitment to lacrosse.” He continued by saying, “My favorite part about playing for True was playing against some of the best teams in the country.” Before committing to Rollins, Frank strongly considered DePauw, Tampa, Franklin and Marshall, and Colorado College.
Other players who committed:
Pierceson Mapes - Augustana College
Ethan Kuykendall - Ohio Valley
Tommy Quinlan - Alma College
Matthew Barigazzi - North Central College
Now that 2016 has come to a close, we have rounded up the True Commitments from across the country to share with you, as we had a number of players make plans to continue their lacrosse careers in college since Summer '16. Congratulations to our True Lacrosse players who made their commitments in 2016!
Trent Abeln (goalie, Olathe South High School, KS ’17) commits to Monmouth College
Trent Abeln has committed to Monmouth College. Trent has been playing lacrosse for five years, three of those with True Kansas. He has accrued several honors throughout his playing career: 2016 Fountain City Lax Bash All Star Team; 2015 Twin Cities Showcase All Star Team; 2015 Chicago Showcase All Star Team; Kansas All Metro All State Team, 2014-2016; Defensive MVP, 2014-2016; and he is team captain at Olathe South. Trent also participates in Frisbee golf, ping-pong, and basketball. He is a member of the French National Honor Society; he received the Presidents Award and the Freshman History Award. Trent plans to study international business and French at Monmouth while continuing his lacrosse career. “I chose Monmouth College because of the great business program and wonderful campus. The facilities are very nice and one of the best I have seen.” In regards to lacrosse, Trent said, “I am looking forward to helping Coach Routt and the team have a successful program.” His three years with True Kansas helped develop his game to reach this next step in his playing career. “It helped me hone my skills and expose me to college coaches,” he said of True, adding that his favorite part was “the opportunities to play every day to get better at my craft.” Before committing to Monmouth College, Trent strongly considered Aurora, St. Mary’s University, and Augustana College.
Gionna Alessandro (midfield/attack, Norwin High School, PA ’17) commits to Wheeling Jesuit University
Gionna Alessandro has committed to Wheeling Jesuit University. She has played for True Pittsburgh Girls for the last two years of her three-year playing career. She was also named MVP and served as captain of her team for two years. Gionna played basketball from 3rd grade to freshman year of high school before focusing solely on lacrosse, the sport she’ll get to continue to play for four more years. “I love the campus, it is the perfect size for me,” Gionna said of Wheeling Jesuit. “I enjoyed being with the team during my overnight. Coach Florence is an awesome coach. I can’t wait to be on the field as a Cardinal next year. I am looking forward to meeting new people and competing at the next level.” Gionna credits the True Pittsburgh Girls coaches with helping her get recruited. “True Lacrosse helped me tremendously with the whole process. Since I started playing my freshman year, playing/practicing against girls who have played longer than me, helped me with improving my skills and the learning aspect of the game. Coach Jen did a lot throughout my recruiting process.” Gionna continued by saying, “I loved all the girls on my team. We pushed each other in practices and in games. The coaches were amazing, with their being so many players from each year, Coach Jen knew each player other than on the field. She pushed you and was always trying to help you improve your game. Coach Kayla was an awesome coach as well.”
Elizabeth Baeder (goalie, Hampshire High School, IL ’17) commits to Siena Heights University
Elizabeth Baeder has committed to Siena Heights University. In addition to playing lacrosse for seven years – three of those with True Illinois Girls – Elizabeth also plays volleyball and participates in marching band. She is a member of the National Honor Society, National Society of High School Scholars, and she is an Illinois State Scholar. She trusted her instincts when she decided on Siena Heights. “It’s that feeling you get when you step on campus and you think to yourself, ‘This is where I want to spend the next four years of my life.’” She continued, “I am looking forward to pursuing my dream in college of majoring in nursing and playing lacrosse.” After three years with True Illinois Girls, Elizabeth feels prepared for the next level. “True Lacrosse exposed me to amazing coaches that only wanted me to be the best I can be. They helped me improve my game in many ways and were there for me at every step of the recruiting process.” She added, “I loved the family type bond that my team had!” Before committing to Siena Heights, Elizabeth strongly considered the College of Mount Saint Vincent and Loras College.
Ethan Barangan (face-off/midfield, Culver Academies, IN ’18) commits to the United States Military Academy at West Point
Ethan Barangan has committed to the United States Military Academy at West Point. Originally from Illinois, Ethan currently attends the Culver Academies in Culver, Indiana, but started playing lacrosse five years ago with True Illinois. Ethan was his team captain at Plainfield High School in 2013-2014, and was named team MVP that same year. The honors student also plays soccer. Ethan will get to continue his playing career with the Division 1 Black Knights. “West Point offered everything, from an outstanding academic institution, the utmost premier leadership training in the country, and a great lacrosse program,” he said. “Also, West Point provides the best opportunity to serve the best nation in the world. I plan to study in the medical field with a focus on surgical oncology.” Ethan is looking forward to playing lacrosse at the next level. “I look forward to being coached from a great coaching staff, having excellent lacrosse facilities, and to help Army to a Division 1 championship title.” His five years with True Lacrosse not only helped Ethan grow his game, but gave him the tools to navigate the recruiting process. “I remember constantly being pushed to play my hardest at practices from coaches like Deane, Gabel, Healy, and Story. They also taught me the recruiting process, which made me more comfortable and organized with recruiting. I can’t thank the coaching staff enough for their hard work to make me a better lacrosse player.” Ethan added, “My favorite part is how much the coaches care for their players. I remember Coach Deane staying after practices with me and helping me get extra face-off reps.” Before committing to West Point, Ethan strongly considered Loyola, Fairfield, and Boston University
Aleezandra Barrera (goalie, William Fremd High School, IL ’17) commits to Colorado State University-Pueblo
Aleezandra Barrera has committed to Colorado State University-Pueblo. Aleezandra has been playing lacrosse for four years, two of those with the True Illinois Girls Program, and was named a Brine All American in that time. She is excited to continue her playing career this fall at CSU-Pueblo. “I chose CSU because I love the coach and the girls on the team,” she said. “I loved my visit and feel at home there. I plan to major in liberal studies and minor in elementary education and Spanish.” Of the next four years of lacrosse, Aleezandra said, “I’m most looking forward to playing with so many great, talented people and learning even more.” Her True Lacrosse coaches helped Aleezandra get to the next level. “True helped me so much. My coach is the one that got me interested in my school.” She added that she is most grateful to “all the amazing coaches and how they all really cared about their players, even if they were not on their teams.”
Owen Bruinius (LSM, Forest Hills Northern, MI ’19) commits to Towson University
Owen Bruinius has committed to Towson University. Owen has been playing lacrosse for six years, and two with True Michigan. The honor roll student also plays football for his high school, but it’s lacrosse he’ll get to play at the D1 level. “I chose Towson University because I loved the campus and the coaching staff,” he said. “I am looking forward most to the competition and competing for a national championship.” Owen’s two years with True Michigan improved his game and helped throughout the recruiting process. “True Lacrosse has helped in so many ways. The practices are intense with a high amount of reps and lots of information. True also helped me through the recruiting process by helping me get in touch with coaches and set up visits.” He added, “My favorite part about playing True is the friendships you make and you get to play with the best kids in the state.” Before committing to Towson, Owen strongly considered Rutgers University.
Maria Cefola (goalie, Franklin Regional High School, PA ’17) commits to Chatham University
Maria Cefola has committed to Chatham University. Maria has been playing lacrosse for seven years, six of those with True Pittsburgh Girls. She is a two-time National Team goalie; two-time All Section goalie; and she was named an Academic All American in 2016. She is Key Club President, Film and Media Club President, and involved in Rotary Club and Interact. Maria is also a member of the National Honor Society, earning highest honors with distinction. She is excited for the next step in her lacrosse career at Chatham. “I was looking for a college that offered a lacrosse program that would help me to continue the sport I love. Chatham reminded me a lot of what I loved about my playing time at True: the coach is amazing, the college fits everything I wanted, and the team will be brand new in 2017, similar to the team I started with at True.” She continued, “I am most looking forward to starting with a brand new team and simply playing at a college level. I am also looking forward to the bond that is created when you have a common goal within a team.” Maria has grown her game immensely with True Pittsburgh. “Before I started playing for True, I was a low defenseman who could barely hold a stick. I am now an All American as well as an All Section goalie. The coaches have built up my physical and mental game every step of the way. I was honestly a very difficult player in their recruiting process. The coaches offered me a lot of college scholarship opportunities, but my parameters for my college were very specific. They committed to helping me work through this process and with True, I was able to find the perfect school.” Maria added, “My favorite part about playing for True was creating a bond with my teammates and coaches that I know will last me a lifetime.” Before committing to Chatham, Maria strongly considered Pitt and Allegheny.
Zac Ciupka (goalie, Barlett High School, IL ’17) commits to Aurora University
Zac Ciupka has committed to Aurora University. Zac has played for True Lacrosse for four years of his five-year playing career. He has been a starter on the Bartlett varsity team since his sophomore year, and served as team captain his junior year. The honor roll student also played football and wrestled for most of his life up until sophomore year. This fall, he’ll continue his education and playing career at Aurora. “I chose my college due to the academic opportunities with my major of sports management, and also the successfulness of the lacrosse program. I am looking forward to making new relationships with new teammates.” His time with True Lacrosse helped with every aspect of Zac’s development. “True Lacrosse has strongly enhanced who I am as a lacrosse player, and as a person. I have been given the opportunity to play for True Lacrosse and also coach the youth teams for True Lacrosse. They have helped immensely in the recruiting process by offering showcases that have helped me get exposed to college coaches.” He continued by saying, “My favorite part of playing for True Lacrosse is the relationships I have developed with all of the coaches, also having the ability to coach the youth teams.” Before committing to Aurora University, Zac strongly considered North Central College, Carthage College, and Monmouth College.
Belle Coffey (defense, Hinsdale South High School, IL ’17) commits to Bard College
Belle Coffey has committed to Bard College. Belle has been playing lacrosse for seven years, four of those with the True Illinois Girls Program. She currently plays for the 2017 Elite Team. In addition to playing lacrosse, Belle also earned All Conference honors in cross country, indoor, and outdoor track. Belle chose Bard to help her achieve her long-term goals. “I chose Bard because, out of all the schools I considered, Bard was the right fit for me academically and will put me in the best spot to get into medical school,” she said. “I love its location, campus, and international connections and opportunities. And also the lacrosse program’s understanding of the difficulty of going pre-med.” Belle is looking forward to helping revive the Bard lacrosse program. “I’m excited about the Coach’s vision to re-start the lacrosse program and bring in a lot of academically and athletically motivated and talented students. Building up a program won’t be easy, but I’m ready for the challenge and the competition at playing the collegiate level. I never had a high school team so having a whole half of my year dedicated to the sport I love most is the aspect I’m looking forward to the most.” Since she didn’t play for her high school team, her True Lacrosse experience was vital in developing her skills and love of the game. “True Lacrosse shaped me into the player I am today. What’s so special about the program is the staff and coaches look at the potential of athletes and help everyone with what they need the most. My coaches were so involved in helping me decide what would fit me in the division, size, location, and more of a school. Things I would have never even thought of. They helped me realize what I needed, and helped me contact coaches and programs that would be the right fit. Even with all the exposure we got from the tournaments we attend, it’s the learning experience that came along with them, like learning how to talk to coaches and such that makes all the difference. “ She added, “My favorite part about True Lacrosse was my team. The program values the ‘family’ feel of a team so much, and it truly makes all the difference on and off the field. Especially over the summer, my teammates are my best friends.” Before committing to Bard, Belle strongly considered Skidmore, Rhodes, Haverford, and the College of Charleston.
Riley Doyle-Odenbach (midfield, Sandburg High School, IL ’17) commits to the Florida Institute of Technology
Riley Doyle-Odenbach has committed to the Florida Institute of Technology. Riley has played lacrosse for four years, and the last two with the True Lacrosse Illinois Girls Program. She was named the Most Improved Player on the varsity team as a freshman. In addition to playing lacrosse, Riley has played basketball for 10 years, and played boys lacrosse for three years; she is an excellent student and ranks in the top 5% of her class, and is a state scholar. She plans to study either pre-med or marine biology as she continues her lacrosse career at the Florida Institute of Technology this fall. “The campus was very modern and beautiful,” she said of her decision to commit to FIT. “The coach and the team were extremely warm and kind. As soon as I walked on campus, I knew this was the school for me.” Riley added that she is most looking forward to “the level of competition, not only with other schools, but within the team as well. I want to be pushed to my limit and play against my older teammates to constantly improve my game.” True Illinois Girls helped Riley learn the game and develop her skills. “I started playing women’s lacrosse freshman year, and I did not know much about the game. True has improved my lacrosse IQ and skill set immensely, and I continue to grow every time I step onto the turf.” She concluded by saying, “I absolutely love my teammates. I wouldn’t trade them for the world. They’ve become some of my best friends and I have no doubt we will continue to stay in touch.”
Griffin Fries (attack, Shawnee Mission East, KS ’19) commits to the United States Air Force Academy
Griffin Fries has committed to the United States Air Force Academy. Griffin has been playing lacrosse for eight years – seven of those with True Kansas – and earned such honors and awards as All Metro Midfield his freshman year, and Under Armour Underclassman All American. He also helped his team win the state championship. In addition to lacrosse, Griffin is also running back for his high school’s varsity football team. He chose the Air Force Academy to continue his education and lacrosse career “for the unbelievable academic and athletic opportunity,” adding that he is most looking forward to “being a part of a team and competing for a national championship.” His many years with True Kansas “helped me not only improve my lacrosse skills but also taught me what it means to be a part of a team.” His favorite part of playing for True was “the tournaments with awesome coaches and great teammates.” Before committing to the Air Force Academy, Griffin strongly considered Denver and Virginia.