The Lehigh men’s lacrosse team will welcome 11 student-athletes next fall to the program. The incoming class features three attackmen, two midfielders, four defenders, one goalie and one face-off specialist.
The class of 2026 will come to Lehigh from all over the map, taking students from Colorado, North Carolina and Virginia, and from lacrosse hotspots such as New York, Pennsylvania and Maryland.
The incoming class features players from top high school lacrosse programs including Calvert Hall College High School, in Baltimore, Maryland; Deerfield Academy, in Deerfield, Massachusetts; La Salle College High School, in Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania; and St. John’s College High School, in Washington D.C.
Associate head coach Will Scudder said the incoming class is a talented group, and some will compete for playing time right away. He expects the group to come in and learn from the upperclassmen.
Throughout the recruiting process, Scudder said the coaching staff looks for players who possess the team’s core values: passion, selflessness, discipline and toughness.
“Rarely will you find a high schooler who is a master of all four, but we consider it a prerequisite to demonstrate at least one or two of these pillars during the recruiting process,” Scudder said.
The incoming defensemen include Richard Checo from St. John’s College High School, Luke McAuliffe from Calvert Hall College High School, Matt Sparhuber from Comsewogue High School and Max Weisman from Miller Place High School.
Scudder said each defender plays hard, is great off the ground and is aggressive on the ball.
Incoming goalie Bryce Pang from Deerfield Academy, will join junior Caleb Creasor and sophomore Will Deskey in the cage next spring.
“We have an active goalie in Pang that is a great ball stopper and likes to make plays outside the net,” Scudder said.
The Mountain Hawks will also welcome face-off specialist Johnny Kidd from Paul VI High School. Scudder said Kidd will provide depth to an already strong unit.
Midfielders EJ Vasile from Calvert Hall College High School, and Peter Theodoropolous from Eastport South Manor High School will join a formidable young core of midfielders.
Attackmen Grant Rodny from Air Academy High School, Curren Johnsen from Bellport Senior High School and Andrew Kelly from La Salle College High School will join Lehigh’s offensive attack.
“Vasile and Theodoropolousare both very skilled and high IQ players,” Scudder said. “Grant Rodny is an explosive dodger, Curren Johnsen is a crafty lefty and Andrew Kelly is a shifty goal scorer.”
Johnsen and Weisman said they chose to attend Lehigh because of the team’s culture and the school’s environment.
“The environment on and off the field is electric and it’s something I want to be a part of,” Weisman said.
Rodny felt an instant connection with the team’s coaching staff. He said they made him feel wanted in their program.
As the incoming recruits wrap up their senior years, they are starting to prepare for their transition from high school to college.
Johnsen said he strives to be the best example of a leader in the classroom and on the lacrosse field. He plans to use his study habits and continue training outside of practice to ensure success on and off the field.
Johnsen said being a student of the game and gaining an understanding of how the team operates is key in preparation for college. He is preparing for the fall by watching game film and studying the movement of the team.
“I’m focusing on the next lift, the next practice or the next day at the wall,” Rodny said. “Rather than stress about where I need to be in the future, I’m just focused on how I can do what I need to do today.”
Weisman is prepared to take on a college workload. He said he expects college to be very different from high school in terms of the academics. As for becoming a Division I athlete, Weisman said it’s going to be a journey both physically and mentally, but he’s ready to take on whatever comes his way.
Johnsen said he is excited to get to work in the fall, as he anticipates being in a position with a heavy workload — both academically and athletically. He said he’s looking forward to meeting the entire team, building solid relationships with his teammates and getting better every day.