For the first time this spring, MaxPreps presents its list of the Top 25 Boys Lacrosse Players to Watch for the 2012 season.
As the sport continues to grow throughout the country, players from all regions enter the spotlight. This group, all seniors, is loaded with talent and features many of the top college recruits.
Players are listed in alphabetical order.Luke Aaron, G, Senior, Deerfield Academy (Mass.)
Known for his good footwork and smarts, he led Deerfield to an undefeated season in 2011. He has signed with Duke.Brent Armstrong, FO, Senior, St. Stephen's & St. Agnes (Alexandria, Va.)
An All-American, All-Met and All-State last year, he is signed with North Carolina.Tyler Avallone, G, Senior, West Morris Mendham (N.J.)
A first-team All-State pick, he has signed with Syracuse. He stood out in the Under Armour Underclassmen Games for Team New Jersey.
Patric Berkery, M, Senior, Garden City (N.Y.)
He was named All-County in helping lead his team to a 19-3 record and a trip to the state finals. He has committed to Penn.Deemer Class, M, Senior, Loyola Blakefield (Towson, Md.)
Named a U.S. Lacrosse All-American last year, he collected 29 goals and 25 assists. He has signed with Duke. Bobby Duvnjak, D, Senior, Manhasset (N.Y.)
Duvnjak helped his team finish 17-2 last year while earning All-American honors for a second time. He has committed to Harvard.Matthew Florence, M, Senior, Kent Denver (Englewood, Colo.)
A U-19 member, he earned 2011 All-American and First Team All-State honors. He is signed with Virginia. Connor Frisina, A, Senior, Conestoga (Berwyn, Pa.)
Frisina collected 56 goals and 25 assists to lead his team to a second-straight state championship. He has signed with Delaware.
Brendan Gaughan, A, Senior, La Costa Canyon (Carlsbad, Calif.)
He has size and strength, he had 48 goals and 31 assists last year and was named a California Gold All Star for the second-straight year. He has signed with Michigan.Paul Heller, A, Senior, Duxbury (Mass.)
He has led his team in scoring in each of the past two years, and helped his squad win a state title in 2011. He has signed with Fairfield.Patrick Kelly, A, Senior, Calvert Hall (Baltimore)
Kelly tallied 79 points last season and helped his team reach the MIAA finals. He has signed with North Carolina.Brad Lott, FO, Senior, Trinity (Louisville, Ky.)
He won 71 percent of his face-offs and added 23 goals and 18 assists last season in leading his team to a 15-1 season. He is signed with Michigan. Case Matheis, A, Senior, Darien (Conn.)
A two-time All-American who is equally dangerous as a passer and scorer. He has signed with Duke.Jake Matthai, M, Senior, Gilman (Baltimore)
At 6-foot-6, he is an imposing figure who helped lead Gilman to the MIAA championship last year. He is signed with North Carolina.Will McNamara, M, Senior, Haverford School (Pa.)
McNamara helped the Fords go 23-0 while winning the mythical national title last year. He is signed with Virginia and he has stood out also at close defense and long pole.
Mikey Morris, A, Senior, Salisbury School (Conn.)
A crafty Canadian, he had 20 goals and 14 assists in just 11 games. He has signed with Johns Hopkins.Ryan Palasek, D, Senior, Rocky Point (N.Y.)
Palasek was named All-Suffolk County and is known for his aggressive style. He has signed with Syracuse.
James Pannell, A, Senior, Smithtown West (N.Y.)
He scored 50 goals and added 25 assists last year while being named an All-American. He has signed with Virginia. Spencer Parks, M, Senior, St. Paul's (Brooklandville, Md.)
A strong passer, Parks had 21 goals and 13 assists last year, earning All-MIAA honors. He is signed with North Carolina.
Conor Peaks, G, Senior, Ponte Vedra (Fla.)
Peaks helped his team reach state semifinals last year. He has committed to Delaware.Zack Powers, D, Senior, Upper Arlington (Columbus, Ohio)
Powers helped his team finish 16-2 and was named the OHSLA Defensive Player of the Year. He has committed to North Carolina.Steve Pontrello, M, Senior, St. Augustine Prep (Richland, N.J.)
A North Carolina signee, he had 52 goals and 23 assists in 2011, giving him 145 goals and 209 points in his career. He was a first-team All-State pick and one of only four high school players to make the USA U-19 team. Connor Reed, M, Senior, Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.)
Reed was named first-team All-WCAC and helped lead Gonzaga to back-to-back WCAC championships. He has signed with Johns Hopkins.
Matt Sexton, A, Senior, Niskayuna (N.Y.)
He has amassed 101 points and played two years on the Upstate Under Armour Underclassmen team. He has signed with Penn State.
Mike Tagliaferri, M, Senior, San Ramon Valley (Danville, Calif.)
A North Carolina signee, Tagliaferri was named to the US U-19 team. He helped his team finish 16-7 while reaching the semifinals of the Northern California playoffs.
Chris Goldberg, Editor and Owner of Lacrosse Media,
operates Phillylacrosse.com, LILacrosseNews.com and BaltimoreLacrosseNews.com,
as well as the new national gear site, LaxGearZone.com.
He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.