Algonquin Lacrosse Trio Recruited to Top Colleges
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Midfielder Davis Kraft, defenseman Brennan Pierce and goalie Giles Ober all enjoyed excellent seasons last year, and all three have now earned spots at competitive college lacrosse programs.
The flood of Tomahawk commitments began early last month when Pierce decided to play at Washington College in Maryland. Two weeks later, Kraft followed with a commitment to Connecticut College, and just this week Ober decided to stay in the Commonwealth and play at Babson.
A Natural in Net
"I wanted to play Division I lacrosse, but I realized that the Division III route was the best fit for me," Ober said of choosing Babson. "The coach from Babson saw me play and really liked me, and obviously the academics are second to none. I want to major in business, and to do that at a place like Babson is a great opportunity."
Ober was remarkable in his first season starting for the Tomahawks last year. The then-junior stepped between the pipes and helped lead a defensive-minded Tomahawks squad to a second consecutive Central Mass championship and State Championship game berth. Ober led Mid-Wach A, allowing only 4.38 goals per game, and was pivotal in clearing and starting the Tomahawk break.
As for this year, Ober has state championship aspirations.
"We have a lot to live up to," Ober said. "There is definitely some unfinished business (After losing the state championship game). Losing five or six good seniors is no excuse for us, and I really believe it's a matter of how hard we're willing to work this offseason to achieve our goal."
In front of Ober, Pierce served as the enforcer of the Tomahawk defense. Still, the intimidating defender isn't done at Algonquin. Along with a goal of bringing the first state title ever to Central Mass, Pierce says he still has some growing to do as an individual player.
"I want to leave a better player," Pierce said. "The type of player coaches warn their attack men about before games."
Pierce chose Washington College largely because of it's environmental studies program, which benefits from being in close proximity to the Chesapeake Bay and Chester River. Also, the campus being within driving distance of cities like Philadelphia, Baltimore and Annapolis didn't hurt.
On the lacrosse side, Washington College contends for national championships yearly in Division III. Now, Pierce says he's just happy to have the decision over with.
"There is pretty much no way around it," Pierce said. "I feel completely relieved to know where I'm playing, and to have the acceptance letter in hand is really reassuring both academically and athletically. It's a certain level of stress off my back and now I can focus on just playing the game to the best of my ability."
While both Ober and Pierce broke out last season, Kraft's coming out party came in the 2011 Central Mass championship game, where the then-sophomore scored four goals- including the game winner - in a breakthrough win over rival St. John's.
Last season, Kraft took on an even bigger role in the Tomahawk offense, scoring 23 goals and chipping in 13 assists. Scoring and facilitating the Algonquin offense have come easy to Kraft. Making a college choice was a bit more of a challenge.
"It was a very long process," Kraft said. "I brought my choices down from 15, to 10, to eight… It wasn't easy to knock some schools out, but you have to."
While Connecticut College does provide Kraft with the chance to play in a competitive conference, he says he aimed to leverage his athletic skills in order to land at the right fit academically.
"Obviously, it was academics first and lacrosse second," Kraft said. "But, if it wasn't for lacrosse, I probably never would have found Connecticut College. So, I used lacrosse as a way to find a school that fit me."
Much will be expected of this talented trio when the season begins, and the Tomahawks return explosive scorers Mike Wood and Keegan Gillis to go with them. When asked about goals for next year, Pierce says it best.
"Well we've lost in the state championship game two years in a row now, so if you had to guess what my goal for this season is…"
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- Algonquin Boys and Girls Advance to State Lacrosse Championship