Players & Coaches from the June 14 Position Clinics
Over 100 players representing 27 different schools from the Triad area are participating in this, the 9th season of high school summer lacrosse for the Triad Blackhawks. With a mix of our traditional HOTT Lax league play, position clinics, scrimmages, and outside competition, the Blackhawks are keeping a lot of area lacrosse players busy with exciting and competitive play this summer. We have 40 additional players in our U11 and U13 programs, along with 100 adult players who mix it up on Sunday evenings. For more information about the summer HOTT Lax league, including stats and standings, go to Summer 2017 High School HOTT Lax.
Jack Dean, a senior at Oak Ridge Military Academy and a member of the 2017 spring Blackhawks, has been selected to play in the inaugural Bull City All Star Game to be played at Duke University’s Koskinen Stadium on Saturday, June 3. Dean was selected from among over 200 nominated senior players throughout the state and is the only player selected from a club team to participate. Dean, who finished in the top eight in his age group at the Faceoff Academy National Showcase in New Jersey in December, was the Blackhawks summer 2017 MVP and a starter on its Apache travel team. His shot was clocked last summer at 98 mph. This spring, Jack served as co-captain of the spring Blackhawks, led the team in goals and ground balls, and won over 78% of his faceoffs. He will attend Quinnipiac University in the fall, where he will major in Game Design & Development and hopes to earn a spot on the lacrosse team. Congratulations, Jack!
Rarely does a team have such fine young men band together in the way that the 2017 spring Blackhawks did this season. The players in the photo to the left — 5 who just started playing lacrosse this year — were with us at the beginning and were still with us at our last game today in the NC Club Championships in Mooresville. A book could be written about everything that happened in between. We did not take home any hardware, but those who witnessed the games came away impressed with the hard play and good spirits of these stalwart young men. These are the guys who played hurt and sick, who came to practice and worked hard, who committed to the team, who did not make excuses, who completed the Blackhawks unique academic program, and who were friends to each other. These were the ones who simply refused to quit. Thank you, Reade Allen, Austin Carr, Marko Oakes, Jake Eaton, Nick Griffin, Paul Stancil, Talon Terry, Reilly McGuire, Quinlan Stewart, Aidan Weyer, Max Dumas, Caleb Tuck, Mason Kearns, and Tray Rickard. GO ‘HAWKS!
Team co-captain Marko Oakes in recent action against Kannapolis. The players on the 2017 team represent 14 different high schools and have some players drive an hour each way to practice.
The spring Blackhawks have certainly had their challenges this spring. The team has had to deal with recent tragedies affecting friends and families of players; withstand their spring head coach’s sudden, early-season resignation; play with low numbers in too many games; and absorb more than the normal quota of injuries. We have yet to prove this season that we can compete with the top club teams in North Carolina, but we are proud of our players for the way they have responded to adversity and have played, if not with the greatest skill at all times, certainly with a love for their teammates and for the game of lacrosse.
This core group of 11 players played 5 games in a row during the Feb 25 play day at Southern Alamance HS.
With the Blackhawks having won two games in a row over inexperienced but spirited opponents, the team stands at 4-5 as it enters the stretch toward the state playoffs. In our seven years of spring Blackhawks, we have had some truly remarkable young men take the field, but the 2017 team may leave its own mark as the most resilient of all.
It has been a challenging week for the spring Blackhawks, with the sudden loss of the head coach and about 1/2 of their roster due to circumstances outside of our control. Circumstances like these sometimes require that you just “suck it up and play,” and that’s exactly what the spring Blackhawks did at Saturday’s Southern Alamance Play Day when a schedule of 5 games in a row faced the 11 players pictured here. Very proud of this group! Not a single complaint the entire day. Not one. They just competed and had fun. GO ‘HAWKS!
The Blackhawks will offer Box Lacrosse for U11 through Adult on Monday nights beginning January 2, 2016 and continuing through February 6, 2016 at the Ultimate Sports Arena, 1368 South Park Drive, Kernersville. This fast-paced 5 v 5 action played with box lacrosse goals and an indoor ball has proven to be a great way to improve stick skills, decision-making, positioning, and foot quickness during the time just before the spring lacrosse season begins. To register or for more information, click BOX LAX 2017.
Adult Blackhawks won the food trophy in the Adult division
The 2016 Hunger Games generated about three tons of donated food and lots of great lacrosse on Saturday at Cash-Bagley Fields in Kernersville. With a record 17 high school teams joining 4 adult teams and approximately 35 youth Lightning Lax players, the four fields at Cash-Bagley were rocking all day with good, competitive lacrosse. Players and teams came from Raleigh, Charlotte, Fayetteville, in addition to players from just about all lacrosse-playing high schools in the Triad. The Alamance War Dogs — who have appeared in all seven of these charity lacrosse events — won the donated food championship in the High School division, while the Adult Blackhawks (sporting spiffy box jerseys) won in the Adult division. Photos of the event can be found at the Triad Blackhawks Facebook Page.
The Alamance War Dogs took home the food trophy in the High School division
The addition of Lightning Lax this year for youth players, and the food that those future stars donated to the cause, virtually guarantees that this year’s event broke the record for donated food. In addition, the net proceeds from the event are expected to exceed $7,000, all of which will go to local charities. It was an outstanding start for the Blackhawks first-year partnership with Salvation Army and its Triad Holiday Food Drive. Thank you to all of our volunteers, players, coaches, and sponsors!
Portion of the food donated by the lacrosse community at Saturday’s Hunger Games
The 7th edition of the Blackhawks Stick it to Hunger Charity Lacrosse Classic will be held on Saturday, November 19 at Cash-Bagley Fields. The event will feature lacrosse for players from 9 years old through adults.
The event will begin at 9:00 AM and go until mid-afternoon.
As in the past, each participating player will donate a bag of non-perishable food to the event, and all food and net tournament revenues will go to those in need. Last year’s event collected over 3.2 tons of non-perishable food and donated $7,000 to charity.
This year’s event features two exciting changes:
Youth will now play in the event, this year in short-field, short-sided “lightning lax” games.
The Blackhawks are teaming with The Salvation Army and supporting the Triad Holiday Food Drive with all donated food.
With commitments already from players and teams throughout the Triad and from Raleigh, Fayetteville, and Charlotte, this year’s event promises to be another success!
For more information, go to Hunger Games.
Jack Dean, Summer 2016 Most Outstanding HS Player
Jack Dean, a rising senior at Oak Ridge Military Academy, has been named the Blackhawks’ summer 2016 Most Outstanding High School Player. Dean led the HOTT Lax league in goals scored (18) and ground balls (52), was third in shooting percentage (47.4%), and asserted his faceoff dominance throughout the summer in leading his team, CrosseFire, to the HOTT Lax finals. For the second summer in a row, Dean led all players in HOTT Lax Impact Quotient, one of the Blackhawks’ statistical measures for field players.
In addition, Jack won 34 of 47 faceoffs (72%) against some of the southeast U.S.’s best club teams in the Mid-Summer Classic — South last month.
Against a Carolina Hilltoppers high school team in the Blackhawks annual trek to Durham last month, Jack scored 4 goals, including the top-shelf
Dean Faces Off in Mid-Summer Classic
game winner with 14 seconds left, in the Blackhawks 7-6 victory.
He capped off his summer by breaking the Blackhawks shot speed record in the Lacrosse Olympics on June 29 with a shot of 98 miles per hour.
Jack hopes to continue playing lacrosse in college once he completes his high school career.
Other award winners:
- Most Outstanding Offensive Player: Patrick Ellis ( W Stokes HS)
- Most Outstanding Defensive Player: Jared Harbaugh (Glenn HS)
- Most Outstanding Goalie: Wyatt Puckett (Wesleyan Christian)
- Coaches Award (exceptional heart & hustle): Justin Raver (N Davidson)
- Blackhawk Awards (for effort, leadership, team focus, and coachability): Nathan Dupke (E Forsyth), Nick Sigmon (Glenn), Ethan Mize (N Davidson), Colin Davis (Wesleyan Christian), Sebastian Manzano (W Stokes), TJ Bassi (SW Guilford).
Patrick Ellis (right), Most Outstanding Offensive Player, follows through on goal-scoring shot vs Hilltoppers in Durham
Goliath Groupers, 2016 HS HOTT Lax Champs
Jackson Sapp is mobbed after scoring game winner for Groupers in overtime of the title game
We have had some good HOTT Lax finals in the last eight years. But this was the best. Period.
Nick Sigmon (Glenn) tied the game with under a minute left in regulation and Jackson Sapp (W Stokes) scored from 8 yards out with 1:30 left in overtime to carry the Goliath Groupers to a come-from-behind 8-7 title game victory over top seed Crossefit under the lights at soggy Cash-Bagley Fields last night. Sapp’s heroics capped an incredible run for the Groupers, who barely survived against Cheddar in the semifinals, again in overtime. The gritty Groupers simply refused to lose, riding several clutch saves by goalie Wyatt Puckett (Wesleyan Christian) and the ground ball play of
CrosseFire — Runner-Up Fought to the End
Mitch Reichart (E Alamance) and Jason Trace (Ragsdale) to bring home the Fiery Cup to head coach Sam Newland for the second year in a row. The physical contest was for much of the game an offensive duel between Crossefit wizard Jack Dean (Oak Ridge Military) and Grouper middie Gage Pearman (SW Guilford). Crossefit appeared to have the game won late — holding a 7-5 lead in the waning minutes — but a key late-hit call on a Grouper goal gave possession back to the Groupers and away from Crossefit faceoff stud Jack Dean and was key in turning the tide.
In the end, the drenched spectators knew they had seen a game for the ages, one in which two outstanding teams gave it their all.
Congratulation to the Goliath Groupers, HS HOTT Lax Champions of 2016!