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Monday, November 24, 2014
Seven Kennedy seniors to play college lacrosse
(Page 2 of 4)
Scott Brinton/Herald
The Kennedy High School lacrosse team boasts seven college recruits this year. They are, top row, from left, Nick DiGangi, Brandon Klein, Ralph Faiella, Chris Racalbuto and Chris Jones; bottom row, Daniel Hartman and Troy Lampert. They were joined by Kennedy’s head lacrosse coach, Craig Papach.

All began their lacrosse careers with the Braves, a Bellmore Police Athletic League team, in grade school, and started playing travel lacrosse over the summer before ninth grade. All but one joined the varsity squad at Kennedy in 10th grade. Lampert, who had focused on soccer before 11th grade, started playing varsity lacrosse in his junior year.

The majority of the seven, Papach said, “showed an interest in wanting to be recruited student-athletes.” That meant attending college showcases up and down the East Coast over the summer after 10th grade, hoping to attract the attention of college coaches. And the pressure was on. One missed ball, one botched scoring attempt during an exhibition game and a coach might have looked to another player.

In the end, though, all found coaches who wanted them.

Nick DiGangi

Age: 17

Hometown: Merrick

Sports: lacrosse, football

Will attend: C.W. Post at Long Island University, Brookville.

DiGangi said he had planned to attend college out of state, but, encouraged by his family to stay close to home, he decided on C.W. Post, which had long been on his radar, even before he was offered a place on its lacrosse team.

“I like to be on campus. But I love the fact I can come home whenever to do laundry,” he said with a laugh.

DiGangi plans to major in computers and business, in the hope of one day interning and possibly working for Apple.

Ralph Faiella

Age: 17

Hometown: Bellmore

Sports: lacrosse, football, basketball

Will attend: Adelphi University, Garden City.

Faiella said he enjoyed playing lacrosse through 10th grade. Mostly, though, he loved being with his friends. Then, in 11th grade, he had an epiphany. Maybe, he thought, he could play college ball.

“I started taking lacrosse more seriously,” he said. “It just kind of grew on me.”

Faiella had a big game against Long Beach. An Adelphi coach was in the crowd, and called Papach to inquire about Faiella. The rest is history. Faiella plans to major in business.

Daniel Hartman

Age: 17

Hometown: Merrick

Sports: lacrosse, football

Will attend: Stevenson University, Owings Mills, Md.

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