Written by SportsDayDFW.com
Dartmouth’s Campbell touts his sport at Patriot Cup showcase; Highland Park falls; Flower Mound wins big
UNIVERSITY PARK — Highland Park’s Patrick Campbell prepared his Dartmouth lacrosse teammates for what to expect when coming to Texas for the fifth annual Patriot Cup at SMU’s Ford Stadium.
“I told them it would be a beautiful day and they better get ready to actually sweat,” Campbell said. “We played in a blizzard last week in New Hampshire. It’s usually so cold, you’re not worried about sweating.”
The Patriot Cup delivered with a 54-degree blue-sky day. About 2,700 fans showed up for a quadruple-header spiced by the many North Texas products of Dartmouth and Georgetown, which scored two goals in the final four minutes for a dramatic 10-9 victory.
The lacrosse showcase has blossomed as North Texas has developed into a lacrosse incubator in the last decade. Centered primarily in North Dallas around Highland Park and several private schools, lacrosse has emerged as a strong collegiate path for which Campbell is an enthusiastic ambassador. St. Mark’s Jeff Perkins also plays for Dartmouth.
“I started playing in the fifth grade,” Campbell said. “When I was in high school, I realized I could play this sport and go to an Ivy League school. I think that’s the great thing about this tournament. The players in Dallas can see it can be done.”
Campbell’s advice to playing collegiate lacrosse?
“Shoot low and away and put in the time on your grades,” he said.
Ex-Mustang back at SMU: Former SMU football player Craig Kennington was on the Ford Stadium sidelines not to watch the bowl-winning Mustangs, but to see son Hilton play for Highland Park. Hilton Kennington is a 245-pound offensive lineman for Highland Park football and 220-pound defenseman for Highland Park lacrosse.
“He loses 25 pounds to have the agility and speed he needs for lacrosse,” said Craig Kennington, who played at SMU from 1982-86. “But the skills he uses are very similar. He has to move laterally, he has to communicate with his teammates about which one each of them is covering, and the goal is to his back and he’s protecting it just like the quarterback.
Hilton Kennington, defensive back Robert Mencke and middle linebacker Bryce Green all start in football and lacrosse for Highland Park.
Furman building with North Texans: Furman is starting a major college lacrosse program with highly respected U.S. men’s national senior team coach Richie Meade.
The private school of 2,700 students in Greenville, S.C., has signed Kennington, Green, Parish Episcopal’s Jack Leslie and Jesuit’s Zach Coker for its Class of 2013. The school’s inaugural Division I season will be 2014-15.
New Jersey champs top Highland Park: Highland Park DI lost to 11-time defending New Jersey state champion Lawrenceville, 12-6, but it counted as only a scrimmage for Lawrenceville, which started its season last week.
With a semester break, Lawrenceville has 40 players hosted by local families. The team will scrimmage against Austin Westlake on Sunday, Jesuit on Wednesday and ESD on Thursday.
Lawrenceville’s stick skills and powerful shots proved too much for Highland Park’s defense and goalie this year, but Highland Park has beaten Lawrenceville in the past.
“We’re still 0-2 against them in games that count,” Lawrenceville coach Allen Fitzpatrick said.
Highland Park’s Green and Mencke each had two goals in the loss.
Flower Mound wins big: Flower Mound looks as strong as its No. 1 state ranking in DII would suggest. Led by Brendon Ianiero, Dylan Sprock, Matt Hammond and Daniel Lambert, Flower Mound beat Highland Park DII, 12-3.