Taylor Vanderbeek -Class of 2011 Currently playing at Hobart College
Team Turnpike has meant a great deal to me over my 4 years of high school. I owe a great deal to Turnpike for helping guide me through high school. The team has always been full of great individuals who enjoy lacrosse and have always been positive influences on me. I learned that it doesn’t matter if your team has 20 D 1 players Turnpike could beat them. This is because we were taught to out work and out hustle the other team, while playing with more passion and pride then them. Coach taught us that as long we did these things we would be successful in lacrosse and life.
The friends I made through Turnpike could never be replaced. Each year we would start over having a whole new team and each year I got to meet a whole new group of friends. Thanks to Turnpike I will have these people to support me for the rest of my life. The bonds the players made on our teams were amazing. Each year bunch of kids from all different towns and backgrounds would come to our first practice and have no idea who each other were. Then by the end of the summer we molded into one unit where everyone was a family and new their jobs on the field.
I learned a lot from the coaching staff of Team Turnpike over the years. We had great coaches each year that exemplified what it means to be a good person and role model to all of our players. They never let us give up and always told us that we could beat anyone. This summer (2010) in particular we learned that time and time again taking down some of the top teams in the nation with a team that many didn’t think was that good. But our coaches believed in us and throughout the summer we showed people around the country that Turnpike wasn’t a team to mess around with and we didn’t just come to play but we came to win every game and best represent ourselves.Jonathan Pillon -Class of 2011 Currently playing at the College of Holy Cross
Playing with team turnpike has been more to me than just having a good time in the summer with friends. To me, Team Turnpike has helped me to develop many skills that I will use later in life, as well as helped me to become skilled in meeting new people and working as a team. Playing on Team Turnpike has showed me that while skill is important, if a group of guys truly believes in what they are doing, they can truly achieve something special.
This became most evident to me during my last summer with Team Turnpike. We were building what appeared to be an awesome program and things were looking good for the summer. Little did I know that we would go on to be one of the best teams in the nation, winning several tournaments and only losing 2 games. However, while playing with a team of exceptionally gifted young men did help, I realized more that the reason we were so successful was because not only did we play for ourselves, but we played for each other. During every second of every game, all 10 guys on the field would be giving it 110%, not so much for themselves, but to make sure they didn’t let their teammates down. This showed me the true value of teamwork and how, when you really put your mind to something, there isn’t any limit.
Through the experiences I’ve had with Team Turnpike, I have learned to be a leader, to give whatever I’m going my all, and to never give up, no matter how high the odds are stacked against you. Playing with Team Turnpike has been one of the best experiences of my high school career, as well as of my life, and I hope that in the following years I can help to show future players everything that I learned.
Ryan Coakley -Class of 2011 Currently playing at Washington College
The overall journey of me playing Team Turnpike was a solid one. Getting to know the coaches and players from different communities was an experience I will never forget. The schedule that was put together and the places we were able to travel to allowed me to see different colleges and prepare myself for my next step of lacrosse.
The Team Turnpike event that epitomizes the players and coaches was our 2010 Champ Camp Tournament. Although the weather was unbearable and some of us became ill, players like Kevin Albert, Eric Lombardo and Mike Dunleavy made an impact in our games. Two of the players I mentioned above played two sides of the field using both a short stick and a defensive long pole. This example of putting players in the position to win and show college coaches their versatility is why Turnpike has an advantage over other Club lacrosse programs. Another example why Turnpike is an excellent lacrosse program is because the willingness of bringing players up to play on higher level tournaments where the competition is extremely high and college coaches are everywhere.
As I look forward to playing in college, I feel I am ready to face the challenges through the benefit of my time at Turnpike. I enjoyed my time at Turnpike and feel like I have grown as a player and as a person. I realize the friendships and relationships I have with the players and coaches I will have for the rest of my life. Thank you Coach Carter and Coach Wigs.