Lynbrook Owl soars toward Long Island Metro lacrosse team


Lynbrook varsity lacrosse defender Lena Weinkauf was named to the Long Island Metro team for the U.S. Lacrosse School Girls’ National Tournament for the second straight year.

“Making the team for the second year is so exciting,” said Lena, 17, a junior at Lynbrook High School. “It’s a huge learning experience for me, and I feel so lucky to be getting the opportunity.”

The tournament will feature 60 teams from across the country and has become one of the nation’s marquee college recruiting events. In order to participate, players have to try out and make regional teams. The event is scheduled for May 25 and 26 from Cedar Lane Regional Park in Bel Air, Md., the site of the NCAA Women’s Division I Lacrosse Final Four and championship rounds.

Lena endured a full day tryout where every high school coach from Long Island had the opportunity to nominate up to six players to compete for spots on one of three teams. The players are evaluated based on a variety of categories and those with the highest scores are placed onto a team. Lena survived two rounds of cuts to make the squad, which, she said, was a tough process.

“It is very hard to make the team because of how competitive Long Island lacrosse is,” she said. She added that players tryout for the team anonymously and their names and schools are hidden from evaluators. Once the teams are compiled, the girls only have the opportunity to practice once or twice before competing against teams from all over the country.

Locally, Lena has shined on the field as well. She was an All-Conference player in her sophomore year and said the connection she’s made with her coach, family and teammates have helped her thrive.

“It felt very rewarding to be an All-Conference player last year,” she said. “My success comes from my varsity coach, Vincent Tetro, my family and my teammates, who are constantly pushing me to my full potential. I have been playing lacrosse with two of my best friends for my whole life in both school and travel and they have also taught me so much about the game and helped me gain confidence over the years.”

In addition to lacrosse, Lena is a member of the varsity basketball and volleyball teams at LHS, and belongs to the National Honors Society and the National Art Honor Society. In her spare time, she helps tutor students in math.

Lena attributed her motivation to start playing lacrosse to her older brother, Kai, who also started in the sport at a young age. “He played on travel teams in elementary and middle school and seeing how much fun he had competing was something I knew I had to be a part of,” she said.