Hurley, Murphy’s add new definition to lax offseason

Medfield native and Bentley Falcon Sam Hurley (22) dishes out a pass during Wednesday night’s summer league action at Compete Strength and Conditioning in Norwood. Photo by Michael Flanagan

By Michael Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor

Whether it is at the youth, high school, or collegiate levels, lacrosse in the towns of Medfield, Westwood, and Walpole has become a year-round commitment. Success on the field begins with conditioning, eating right, studying film, training, and yes, also keeping the skills sharp.

Throughout a significant portion of the summer, several local lacrosse purebreds who’ve gone on to succeed at the Division I and III levels have taken part in the local indoor summer league at Compete Strength and Conditioning in Norwood every Wednesday night, playing alongside some of the area’s best collegiate and high school lacrosse talent.

This past Wednesday, Hometown Weekly was invited to visit Compete S&C in Norwood and get a first-hand look at what the “offseason” is like for some of the area’s top lacrosse stars.

It quickly became clear that there is no such thing as an offseason for the majority of these young men.

Participants from Medfield in the Compete indoor summer league include 2017 Medfield High star, Johns Hopkins commit, and Avon Old Farms-bound Owen Murphy, brother and Holy Cross Crusader Will Murphy, Bentley’s Sam Hurley, Brown’s Alex Santangelo, and Middlebury tri-sport star Frankie Cosolito (football, hockey, lacrosse).

From Walpole, Johns Hopkins rising senior Pat Fraser and Luke Buckley of the 2017 national runner-up Ohio State Buckeyes also compete at Compete, with Harvard’s John O’Leary highlighting the several representatives from Westwood and Xaverian.

And oh yeah, all of these guys just mentioned from Medfield, Westwood, and Walpole all play on the same team every Wednesday; just try and imagine having to defend that onslaught of offensive skill and shot speed.

Even with a condensed 60x35 field being at play, Cosolito says that this league founded and ran by Compete owner Joe Drain is the perfect fit.

“It’s a fun league,” said Cosolito. “The guys all show up every Wednesday and take it seriously. It definitely gives us that competitive edge we all need to keep our skills fresh during the summer.”

O’Leary says that the small size of the indoor field allows guys to work on several aspects of their game, including tight-area dodging, and if this league were played on a normal-sized field, these improvements may not be made.

“It’s a shooter’s league, that’s for sure,” said O’Leary. “[Pat] Fraser once put up 20 goals in a night. It was wild. But yeah, this league definitely helps guys work on their stick and dodging skills, keep their muscle memories in order as far as shooting, and obviously it keeps our legs fresh.”

Summer leagues do not normally receive much attention. But then, when countless All-Americans and letter-winners from several different rival towns/schools compete with and against one another, it becomes impossible to ignore.

Best of luck to these young men as they get ready to head back out to school later this month and compete for a national championship in Division I, Division III, and prep.

For funny and incisive sports analysis, follow Mike Flanagan on his personal Twitter at @fLAno0, or read his blog at www.flannylive.wordpress.com.

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