Q: This season had to be special for you, being your senior year and all. Did it meet your expectations?

A: Coming in, I knew we had a good team but I also knew we lost a lot of players [from the 2018 state title team]. So we were pretty inexperienced. But if you told me coming into the season that we’d play in the state championship game again, I’d have considered that a pretty successful season. … Getting the state title again would have been a nice accolade, but just seeing how far we’ve come in these four years is just amazing.

Q: You took on an increased scoring and distribution role this year. When did you know you were gonna have to do that?

A: So pretty much when Wyatt [Hamilton] got injured at the beginning of the season. My role increased even more after that. Just knowing there were a lot of people looking up to me, I knew I had to do my best.

Q: Was that scoring role difficult at first?

A: I’ve been playing midfield since I was a little kid, so that role wasn’t difficult. But connecting with my teammates and forming a bond was easier than I thought.

Q: Did you have to gain any extra skills to be able to become a scorer?

A: I just tried to protect the ball a little more. Like, I usually throw some crazy behind-the-back bounce passes in games, but this year I tried to protect the ball a little more, not throw the ball around.

Q: When the season began, did you have any idea your stats would be as good as they were, that you’d score that many goals and contribute in such a big way?

A: I guess you could say I was surprised by that. I was really focused on the moment, not focused on myself or what I was doing, just focused on helping my team get better.

Q: Seeing as how this team lost many of its main players from 2018, did that give you guys more resolve?

A: I don’t think I feel like we had to step it up, but I didn’t think we had to have anything to prove as a class. Each group is different and has a different dynamic. The seniors just tried to give it 100% so the younger guys could reach their maximum potential, too. Each class below sees how hard the class above them has worked. So they keep working harder and harder. They see the reward and the payoff.

Q: How long have you been playing lacrosse?

A: Since I was in first grade, like I think I was 7 or 8.

Q: Were you interested in any other sports growing up?

A: So I used to play soccer and basketball a lot and also played football. I used to play soccer and lacrosse at the same time in the spring. But when I got to higher levels, I had to decide to play just lacrosse, and that’s what I did.

Pretty good decision.

I’m glad I got to play lacrosse. My mom had a big influence on that. She played lacrosse in high school. When I was a kid, I played midfielder and goalie. When I was in eighth grade, I tried out as a goalie, and I was like, “This is not the position for me.”

Q: When did you know you were talented enough to play at the next level?

A: So my freshman year I wouldn’t say I necessarily knew I was skilled enough, but I played on a travel team in Richmond that was very competitive. I made that team, and ever since then I knew. ... They have a lot of connections and helped me get into Washington and Lee, and I’m really thankful for that.

Q: How do you think Glass has been able to reload every year to put a quality team on the field?

A: I think just the commitment and the drive that everybody’s had. And we’ve also been playing lacrosse together since 7 or 8 years old. When we were on Blue Ridge Lacrosse [Club], we’d travel to Richmond and Charlottesville and lose every game by 10 goals. Now, seeing how we got here, going to three straight championships, that’s pretty amazing.

Q: What’s one of your favorite memories from high school lacrosse?

A: Winning the state championship. That was a big moment last year, and it was special for the whole Glass community. … And just seeing how happy my teammates were and coach [Eddie] Ranuska was after winning it.

Q: What are your goals for college?

A: [Washington and Lee’s] faceoff guy is gonna be a senior next year. He was an all-American this year, so I don’t really know what I’m walking into. But I just hope to make an impact and help everybody out in a positive way.

Q: You’ll be playing with your friend, Wyatt Hamilton. Are you guys stoked about continuing your careers together?

A: Yes, sir. We’re really excited about it. He’s on the floor below me on our dorm, so we’ll be really close again.

Q: Any plans beyond college?

A: I want to do something with economics or business.

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Ben Cates covers high school sports for The News & Advance. Reach him at (434) 385-5527. 

Ben Cates covers high school sports for The News & Advance. Reach him at (434) 385-5527.

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