McCurry, Cruz and Aquino Lead 2022 Prime Time Summer Invitational’s Players Who Impressed

(Inside Lacrosse Photos: Tommy Lyons)

Reese Stadium filled itself once again with action-packed championship lacrosse. IL contributor Jack Raba joined me in New Haven, Conn., Along with nearly 100 college coaches to check out some matchups in the 2023, ’24 and ’25 divisions.

Champions

2023: Leading Edge
2024: Team 91 Long Island Wolfpack (OT)
2025: Prime Time

In the Rising Senior division, Leading Edge defeated a deep Prime Time squad to hold the trophy. The balance of offensive firepower from Leading Edge proved difficult to overcome. Of the 10 goals, I’d estimate they came from seven different scorers.

The 2024 Championship was a thriller, as anticipated. Eclipse 2024 Black had a storybook Sunday, with both of their playoffs games going to overtime. In the Championship, Kyle Colsey scored on the doorstep as time expired in regulation. But Team 91 Wolfpack’s Hunter Aquino sealed the title, driving down the left hand alley, rolling back to his strong hand, sweeping to the belly of the defense for the win.

Click here for Prime Time Summer Invitational Scores, Players & Evaluations.

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Players that Impressed

Jake Melchionni | LSM | 2023 | Delbarton (NJ) | Leading Edge Elite 2023 | Villanova
A vacuum between the lines, the Jersey product does not miss off the carpet. Melchionni is a true north-south player, a quick side step then pushing things into the heart of defenses. It was rare to see him safely hit an attackman in the alley and sub – every possession was pushed hard to the rack.

Matthew Jeffery | M | 2024 | Cheshire (Conn.) | Eclipse 2024 Black
A dominant lefty who attacks with a vengeance from the wing. His ability to initiate contact and drive his way through defenses while maintaining speed in his sweep is impressive. It’s clear he’s got a ton of game, with a strength in being an initiator. Lefty midfielders cause a lot of trouble at the next level. As Jeffery continues to add layers to his dodges, you can only imagine his stock to rise in the 2024 class.

Kian McCarthy | M | 2023 | Rye (NY) | Prime Time 2023 | Penn State
McCarthy stood out among midfielders at the event, displaying his ability as an elite sharpshooter, both on the run, as well as with time and room. The Penn State commit was able to showcase his athleticism, getting to dangerous areas on the field with ease, and constantly putting pressure on opposing defenses over the weekend.

Owen Salanger | G | 2024 | Liverpool (NY) | Orange Crush 2024
A shooter’s worst nightmare: a lefty with patient feet and an amazing tracking ability. A clear sign of a mature keeper is his ability to not flop unnecessarily. Almost more impressive than his composure to stay set is his rebound control. Salanger will be a player to watch in the 2024 class.

Greyson Brockman | M | 2023 | West Forsyth (Ga.) | Thunder 2023 Blue | Mercer
If power midfielder was an option, Brockman would fit the bill. Ending Saturday by sticking an opponent off a loose ground ball, he brings college ready contact for those that step into the ring. The rest of his game stands around his athleticism and ability to match feet. When he does carry the rock, he’s not afraid to step into dangerous scoring areas.

Ben Burmeister | M | 2024 | Staples (Conn.) | Express North 2024 Black
The Fairfield County product has plenty of tricks in his bag to create his own shot. He’s got a solid right-to-right split, in which he makes his move from college distance. Burmeister takes advantage of any spacing he creates with an absolute hammer of a shot. With the right lineup and chemistry, you can expect Burmeister to excel at the next level as an initiator and outside shooter.

John McCurry | A | 2023 | Wall (NJ) | Leading Edge Elite 2023 | Navy
The future Midshipman was a big proponent of Leading Edge’s championship run. Largest attribute is his versatility, demonstrating the ability to score in a multitude of ways. He represents hard-nosed plays, ruthless GBs and relentless riding.

Erza Moore | A | 2024 | Roswell (Ga.) | Thunder 2024 Blue
The ATL native has all of the tools that a college offense is looking for: an ability to capitalize, create and connect. He has a certain bounce when working the low wings creating a ton of opportunity to either work himself underneath, or drive topside for his own shot or to hit a cutter inside.

Gavin Lechner | A | 2023 | Exeter (NH) | NH Tomahawks 2023 | Uncommitted
The left-handed attackman possesses indoor tendencies, as he fired off pinpoint passes and shots with defenders draped all over him. Using his big frame, Lechner was able to post up on defenders and use their pressure against them, ultimately creating good offense from the wing and around GLE.

Ryan Trafford | FO | 2024 | Delbarton (NJ) | BBL Elite 2024
Trafford is a complete package. Athletic, offensive weapon and doesn’t hurt to take home 70% of your draws. He can put up numbers on the statsheet in multiple facets, taking his opposing draw man to the rack, capitalizing on transition or even finishing off give-and-go cuts. He will be an absolute asset in college, it will be excited to see where the recruiting process takes him.

Francis Keneally | LSM | 2024 | Warwick (NJ) | BBL Elite 2024
Keneally is an absolute pest on ball, constantly pressing, pushing hands and making all midfielders uncomfortable. In a club setting, it’s trying to isolate dodges or cause disruptions. We can only imagine what type of calculated defense he can exhibit with consistent schemes and scouting reports.

Cole Cashion | M | 2023 | Rumson-Fair Haven (NJ) | Leading Edge Elite 2023 | Yale
Cashion was able to create separation regularly, using elite change of direction to free his hands for excellent scoring changes or feeding opportunities. The slick midfielder saved his best for last, lighting up the statsheet in the championship game. The Yale commit seemed more than comfortable in his future home.

Isaac Cruz | M | 2024 | St. Joseph (NY) | Prime Time 2024
The rising junior may be in consideration for most athletic player in this class, pushing the ball in transition almost every opportunity he had. At certain points, Prime Time’s best offense was best to let Cruz punt return and create his own shot, or create an open shooting lane. His speed lets him vary his dodges, showing multiple ways to create offense. Cruz will be a player to watch in the class.

Ben Friedman | G | 2024 | Taft (Conn.) | Prime Time 2023
Friedman’s poise and maturity between the pipes would have you fooled, as the Taft product was evidently the backbone of an impressive Prime Time defense, playing up a grade. The young netminder routinely made clean saves on shots that the defense was willing to give up. He got his eyes upfield and would drop dimes in the clearing game, creating transition opportunities.

Cole Frank | FO | 2024 | Pinkerton Academy (NH) | NH Tomahawks 2024 Purple
Frank was a differencemaker for the Tomahawks with numerous clutch wins throughout the weekend. Primarily winning the ball to himself, he fights hard in the trenches to work the ball to the alley for each possession.

Hunter Aquino | A / M | 2024 | Wilson (NY) | Team 91 Long Island Wolfpack
Aquino tore up the weekend, taking home the trophy in OT for the Wolfpack. Considerable size, he battled in different areas of the offensive end. Prefers his right hand, but does a great job bouncing to his left hand to create space to come back hard to his strong hand. Comfortable attacking not only from the high wings, he shows a diversity in his dodging with some low-wing initiation, too.

John Mustard | M | 2024 | Bergen Catholic (NJ) | NJ Riot 2024 Chaos
The lefty may arguably have been the best shooter in the 2024 Division this past weekend. NJ Riot’s recruiting coordinator Bryan Armstrong confirms that Mustard is currently a serious NHL prospect, having hopped off a plane from a hockey event in Iowa days before heading up to the Prime Time Summer Invitational. There are two qualities that separates Mustard’s shot from the rest: 1. An unlimited amount of release points (haven’t seen the same shot twice) 2. The sense that he his growth in lacrosse is only getting started. Whether it’s on the ice or turf, keep an eye on Mustard in the future.

Will Schlamme | FO | 2024 | Mamaroneck (NY) | Predators 2024
A left-handed draw man is one of the most sought after traits in the game. Schlamme has a nose for the cage, but more importantly he does the simple things well. Winning the ball forward is an excellent combination for a lefty, picking the ball up while protecting his stick from the opposing draw man.

Ethan Lyons | LSM | 2024 | Glen Ridge (NJ) | NJ Riot 2023
Lyons connected the dots up and down the field for Riot. To over-analyze, the breakdown of speed from when he gets the head of his stick to a ball, to his first three steps out of the groundball are really impressive. There are those who are good at picking up the ball, and there are those who create opportunities out of all of their groundballs.

Ethan Bernich | G | 2024 | Exeter (NH) | NH Tomahawks 2024 Purple
Bernich makes the game look easy. Great reaction speed and footwork. He squares up very well with the shooter, allowing him to really lock in on his top-hand punches. He had an absolute stellar day on Saturday, putting up an impressive save percentage for a club tournament. For those looking for consistency, Bernich has turned some heads.

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