By Desirée Keegan
Although North fell to South in a 10-9 overtime thriller during the Under Armour All-America lacrosse game in Maryland June 30, featuring the country’s best high school seniors, recent Mount Sinai graduate Meaghan Tyrrell was just proud to have been a part of it.
“Being chosen to be part of the Under Armour game is such a huge honor because it’s the top 44 players in the country being chosen, which makes for a great game,” she said. “It was quality, competitive lacrosse, which is good to have before heading into college.”
According to Ward Melville senior Shannon Berry, another player selected for the game, the teams arrived in Baltimore Thursday, June 28, and the girls spent the first evening at the Under Armour headquarters, where they received all of their gear. The teams practiced twice on Friday before taking the field Saturday morning.
“It was crazy to talk to some of those girls over the weekend and reflect on our time as young lacrosse players, and to see how far our journey’s as lacrosse players have gone,” the Princeton University-bound
midfielder said. “All of my teammates were both incredible lacrosse players and great people. They were all extremely competitive, but also very friendly and kind.”
Tyrrell said working alongside former competition was part of what made the experience unique.
“It’s cool to get to know people that you’ve played against in school and travel lacrosse,” she said. “I think our team clicked practicing on both offense and defense.”
Tyrrell played with teammate Meaghan Scutaro, a defender headed to the University of Notre Dame, for the last time. She said it was the best way she could cap off her high school lacrosse career.
“I can’t think of any other way to say goodbye to high school lacrosse,” she said. “The game itself was so fun.”
The Syracuse University-bound attack scored twice, her second tying the game at 9-9, which is something she’d consistently done for her Mustangs girls lacrosse team across her career.
“It was a great feeling to be able to help the team,” she said. “We had an opportunity to go into overtime and be able to try and win.”
Berry totaled four ground balls and five clears, taking one shot on goal.
“The level of competition was certainly the highest I have played in so far in my career,” said Berry, who played at attack, midfield and defense during the game. “The entire experience was incredible. Under Armour and Corrigan Sports truly do an amazing job of honoring the senior athletes and giving them an unforgettable, once-in-a-lifetime experience.”
Ward Melville graduate Alex Mazzone was chosen to play in the boys game. The Georgetown University-bound defender was on the South team that toppled North 22-15.
“It was really awesome to have both a male and female to represent Ward Melville,” Berry said. “It was great knowing that both of us were there representing our community.”
Northport attack Emerson Cabrera said the athletes are treated like professionals. They’re given new sneakers, cleats, uniforms and sticks and are followed around by photographers all weekend. The game is also broadcast live, and the teams took part in a charity day, working with Harlem Lacrosse, which Cabrera said was rewarding.
She assisted on Bayport-Blue Point attack Courtney Weeks’ goal, who Cabrera said is a longtime friend of hers with whom she played club ball.
“Everyone wanted to contribute somehow to the score, I was lucky to get a dodging opportunity to create an open cut for Courtney,” she said. “This was really an experience like no other. Under Armour makes it so special for us. I’m very proud to have ended my high school career being an Under Armour All-American.”
Cabrera, along with many of her teammates from the all-star game, will continue to compete alongside one another at the collegiate level. She’ll be joining Long Beach goalkeeper Sarah Reznick and Notre Dame Prep attack Hannah Mardiney at the University of Florida in the fall where several other local alumnae currently play, like soon-to-be senior Sydney Pirreca (Mount Sinai) and sophomore Shannon Kavanagh (Smithtown East). Cabrera added that ending her high school career with this game wasn’t just an honor, but a dream come true.
“It’s been something I’ve wanted to be a part of since I was little,” she said. “All of us have played with or against each other over the years and many of us will be joining forces together in college, so it was easy for our team to mesh. The transition I’m sure will still be a little tough, but as long as we all work hard, I’m sure it’ll go well.”