via US Lacrosse Magazine online – article by Matt Hamilton and picture from the magazine via Bill Ziskin
Author’s Note: this article caught my attention since it fits into a theme I am going to explore more this summer on recruiting. TD Ierlan currently is second in the nation in Division I in faceoff percentage at 72% as a freshman. He is a graduate of Victor in upstate NY, a program that not only was a NY State champion last year but was also the school voted the national champions by the pollsters at Inside Lacrosse last year. In other words, you can’t assume that he played for a program where he might fall through the cracks.
But the biggest takeaway from the story was that he was TURNED DOWN by at least 10 Division I programs when he showed interest in attending, until Albany offered him a spot. There is a lesson here for our kids about not giving up if you are not accepted by a school you are interested in. I have made a point many times before that you look at lacrosse as a secondary reason to attend a school, but here is something else to consider . . . if you are really confident you can play at a high level then you can give it a shot where you want to go.
I think you will find this a pretty interesting read.
ONCE DENIED, TD IERLAN NOW FUELING ALBANY’S HISTORIC OFFENSE
THU 18 MAY 2017 | MATT HAMILTON | COLLEGE
It was just his fall debut, but TD Ierlan felt the nerves as he entered the stadium at Johns Hopkins’ Homewood Field for a matchup with Richmond last October. Ierlan, Albany’s freshman faceoff specialist, had grown up watching games take place on the historic field, and he’d be suiting up for the Great Danes for the first time at that very same place.
It was a lot to take in for the product of Victor (N.Y.), who had heard “no” from up to 10 different schools during the recruiting process.
“Just going through warm ups, you looked at it like ‘Wow. I’ve seen the Hopkins field so many times. Now I’m actually playing on it,’” Ierlan said. “… Leading up to [the first faceoff], I was a nervous wreck. I was shaking and stuff. As soon as I won that first one, I was excited and thought it was fun.”
He won the first faceoff, part of a streak that saw him take 14 of 15 faceoffs against Spiders faceoff man Peter Moran. All the nerves were for naught, as Ierlan put together a stellar debut, even if it was just a fall scrimmage.
Albany coach Scott Marr, watching Ierlan from the sidelines, turned to his assistants in approval.
“We looked at each other on the sidelines, and it was pretty premature,” Marr said. “I said ‘I think we’ve got something in this kid.’ We were all pretty happy to see what he had in that fall tournament.”
Ierlan and his coaching staff came out of the fall tournament with confidence that he could contribute for this Great Danes team. It would have been tough, however, to forecast just how good Ierlan would be in his first season at Albany.
Ierlan, who will face off against top-seeded Maryland on Sunday afternoon, finished the regular season as the nation’s second-best faceoff man. His 72.5 percent on faceoffs sits behind only Denver’s Trevor Baptiste. He won 73 faceoffs more than any other freshman in Division I.
“It’s pretty cool to here all these things,” Ierlan said of the acclaim that accompanied his impressive season. “It hasn’t really hit me. At the end of the year, I’ll go back and look at it like ‘that’s really cool’ but right now, I have to focus up. Especially this time of the year, when you’re only playing the best guys.”
“He’s clearly the best faceoff guy we’ve ever had,” Marr said. “At this point, every faceoff he goes out for, we feel he’s going to win it. That’s a great feeling to have.”
Read the rest HERE