(Inside the Lacrosse Photos: Tommy Lyons) (Video: LSG_Visuals)
Reese’s Stadium once again filled with action-packed championship lacrosse. IL contributor Jack Raba joined me in New Haven, Conn., with nearly 100 college coaches to check out some games in the 2023, ’24, and ’25 divisions.
2023: leading edge
2024: Team 91 Long Island Wolfpack (OT)
2025: prime time
In the Rising Senior division, Leading Edge defeated a deep team from Prime Time to claim the trophy. Leading Edge’s balance of offensive firepower proved difficult to overcome. Of the 10 goals, I would estimate they came from seven different strikers.
The 2024 championship was a thriller, as expected. Eclipse 2024 Black had a storybook Sunday, with their two overtime playoff games. In the Championship, Kyle Colsey scored from the doorstep as regulation time expired. But Team 91 Wolfpack’s Hunter Aquino sealed the title, driving down the left lane, returning to his strong hand, sweeping the underbelly of the defense for the win.
Click here for scores, players and ratings from the Prime Time Summer Invitational.
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Players who impressed
Jake Melchionni | LSM | 2023 | Delbarton (NJ) | Vanguard Elite 2023 | Villanova
A void between the lines, the Jersey product does not miss the carpet. Melchionni is a true north-south player, a quick sidestep then pushing things into the heart of the defences. It was rare to see him safely hitting an attacker in the driveway and sub – every possession was pushed hard towards the rack.
Matthew Jeffery | M | 2024 | Cheshire (Connecticut) | Eclipse 2024 Black
A dominant southpaw who attacks with vengeance from the wing. His ability to initiate contact and force his way through defenses while maintaining speed in his sweep is impressive. It’s clear he has a ton of play, with a strength to be a starter. Left midfielders cause a lot of problems at the next level. As Jeffery continues to add layers to his dodges, you can only imagine his stock will increase in the 2024 class.
Kian McCarthy | M | 2023 | Rye (NY) | Prime Time 2023 | Penn State
McCarthy stood out among the midfielders at the event, displaying his ability as a sharpshooter, both on the run, as well as with time and space. Penn State’s commitment was able to show off their athleticism, get into dangerous areas on the field with ease, and constantly put pressure on opposing defenses over the weekend.
Owen Salenger | G | 2024 | Liverpool (New York) | Orange Crush 2024
A shooter’s worst nightmare: a southpaw with patient feet and incredible tracking ability. A clear sign of a mature keeper is his ability not to flop unnecessarily. Almost more impressive than his poise to stay put is his rebound control. Salanger will be a player to watch in the class of 2024.
Greyson Brockman | M | 2023 | West Forsyth (Ga.) | Thunder 2023 Blue | Mercier
If the powerful midfielder was an option, Brockman would fit the bill. Finishing Saturday by sticking an opponent on a loose ground ball, he brings college-ready contact for those stepping into the ring. The rest of his game relies on his athleticism and ability to match feet. When carrying the boulder, he is not afraid to enter dangerous scoring areas.
Ben Burmeister | M | 2024 | Staples (Connecticut) | Express North 2024 Black
The Fairfield County product has plenty of tricks up its sleeve to create its own shot. He has a strong right-to-right split, in which he moves away from college. Burmeister takes advantage of any spacing he creates with an absolute hammer blow. With the right lineup and chemistry, you can expect Burmeister to excel at the next level as an insider and outside shooter.
John McCurry | A | 2023 | Wall (NJ) | Vanguard Elite 2023 | Marine
The future contender was a big fan of the Leading Edge championship chase. The biggest attribute is his versatility, demonstrating the ability to score in multiple ways. It stands for hard-nosed games, ruthless GBs, and relentless driving.
Erza Moore | A | 2024 | Roswell (Ga.) | Thunder 2024 Blue
The ATL native has all the tools a college offense is looking for: an ability to capitalize, create and connect. He has some bounce when working the low wings, which creates a ton of opportunity to either work underhand himself or drive up high for his own shot or hit a cutter inside.
Gavin Lechner | A | 2023 | Exeter (NH) | NH Tomahawks 2023 | Uncommitted
The left-handed striker possesses inside tendencies, as he made accurate passes and shots with defenders draped over him. Using his big frame, Lechner was able to post on defenders and use their pressure against them, ultimately creating a good attack from the wing and around GLE.
Ryan Trafford | OF | 2024 | Delbarton (NJ) | BBL Elite 2024
Trafford is a complete package. Athletic, offensive weapon and does not hurt to win 70% of your draws. He can put numbers on the stat sheet in many facets, take his opposing shooter to the rack, capitalize on transition, or even complete round-trip cuts. He will be an absolute asset to college, he will be excited to see where the recruiting process takes him.
Francis Keneally | LSM | 2024 | Warwick, New Jersey | BBL Elite 2024
Keneally is an absolute pest on the ball, constantly pressing, pushing hands and making all midfielders uncomfortable. In a club, it is a question of isolating dodges or causing disturbances. We can only imagine what kind of calculated defense he can present with consistent stratagems and recon reports.
Cole Cashion | M | 2023 | Rumson-Fair Haven (NJ) | Vanguard Elite 2023 | Yale
Cashion was able to create separation on a regular basis, using the elite change of direction to free up his hands for excellent score changes or feeding opportunities. The skilful midfielder saved his best for last, lighting up the stat sheet in the league game. The Yale clerk seemed more than comfortable in his future home.
Issac Cruz | M | 2024 | St. Joseph (NJ) | Prime Time 2024
The rising junior can be considered the most athletic player in this class, pushing the ball in transition almost every opportunity he had. At times, the best offense in Prime Time was to let Cruz come back and create his own shot, or create an open shot lane. His speed allows him to vary his dodges, showing several ways to create offense. Cruz will be a player to watch in the class.
Ben Friedman | G | 2024 | Taft (Connecticut) | Prime Time 2023
Friedman’s balance and maturity between pipes would have fooled you, as the Taft product was obviously the backbone of an impressive Prime Time defense, playing a note. The young keeper regularly made clean saves on shots that the defense were willing to give up. He had his eyes on the pitch and was dropping pennies in the clearing game, creating transition opportunities.
Cole Frank | OF | 2024 | Pinkerton Academy (NH) | NH Tomahawks 2024 Purple
Frank made the difference for the Tomahawks with plenty of clutch wins throughout the weekend. Mainly winning the ball for himself, he fights hard in the trenches to move the ball up the aisle for every possession.
Aquino Hunter | Y/M | 2024 | New Church Academy (Pennsylvania) | Team 91 Long Island Wolfpack
Aquino tore up the weekend, winning the trophy in OT for the Wolfpack. Of considerable size, he struggled in different areas of the offensive end. Prefers his right hand, but does a great job bouncing off his left hand to create space to come back hard to his strong hand. Attacking at ease not only from the high wings, he shows diversity in his dodging with an initiation to the low wings as well.
Jean Mustard | M | 2024 | Catholic of Bergen (NJ) | NJ Riot 2024 Mayhem
The southpaw was arguably the best shooter in the 2024 division last weekend. NJ Riot scouting coordinator Bryan Armstrong confirms Mustard is currently a serious NHL prospect, having jumped out of a plane from a hockey event in Iowa days before heading to the Prime Time Summer Invitational . There are two qualities that separate Mustard’s shot from the rest: 1. Unlimited release points (didn’t see the same shot twice) 2. A sense that his growth in lacrosse has only just begun. Whether on the ice or on the grass, keep an eye out for Mustard in the future.
Will Schlamme | OF | 2024 | Mamaroneck (New York State) | Predators 2024
A left-handed shooter is one of the most sought-after traits in the game. Schlamme has a nose for the cage, but more importantly, he does the simple things well. Winning the ball forward is a great combination for a southpaw, picking up the ball while protecting their stick from the opposing shooter.
Ethan Lyons | LSM | 2024 | Glen Ridge (NJ) | NJ Riot 2023
Lyons connected the dots up and down the field for Riot. To over-analyze, the velocity distribution between when he puts his clubhead on a ball and his first three steps off the court is truly impressive. There are those who are good at picking up the ball, and there are those who create chances from all their balls in the field.
Ethan Bernich | G | 2024 | Exeter (NH) | NH Tomahawks 2024 Purple
Bernich makes the game easy. Great reaction speed and footwork. He adapts very well to the shooter, allowing him to really lock in his punches. He had an exceptional day on Saturday, making an impressive save percentage for a club tournament. For those looking for consistency, Bernich has turned heads.