As one of the top recruits in the country, Joey Terenzi’s reputation precedes him. According to Inside Lacrosse, he is the top midfielder in his class nationwide, but he is incredibly humble and will be the first to say it.
“If you don’t show it on the field, no one really cares how good they say you are,” Terenzi said. “It comes down to hard work and having evidence to support what people say.”
Terenzi recently committed to play lacrosse at the University of Virginia (UVA). As the 2019 NCAA champions, UVA has one of the best lacrosse programs in the country, but Terenzi says that even without lacrosse, he knew UVA was the place for him the moment he visited.
The junior started as a freshman on the Manhasset varsity lacrosse team and was a big component of their run to states in 2019, scoring the game-winner against Garden City in the Nassau County Championship. This perfect moment has come to define Terenzi’s ability, and to him, is a product of hard work. He scored in the bottom corner, which Ternezi is proud to point out is where his Express lacrosse coach, Mike Chanenchuk, had timelessly emphasized as the best place to score.
“Not just any freshman is scoring the game-winner of the Nassau County Championship,” Chanenchuk said. “Joey’s an incredible player and he likes to give everyone the credit. He does not want to be in the limelight, he just wants to win.”
Citing his own greatest strength as his ability to generate enthusiasm and make his teammates better, and his biggest weakness as not having more assists, Terenzi is a true team player.
“He is the guy you want in your locker room,” Manhasset Head Coach Keith Cromwell said. “He’s a special kid, a different kid. He is a full-on lacrosse rat and puts in the extra work. He’s a true student of the game.”
With 23 goals and 13 assists his freshman year, Cromwell identifies Terenzi as a key player whose impacts are seen on and off the field and has no doubt success will follow him.
Terenzi is also a member of the varsity football team, where he loves being on the field. He enjoys playing with friends and takes great pride in teaching the game to younger kids who remind Terenzi of himself. It is not just about talent for this gifted athlete but passion.
“It’s okay to not be the best. Just make sure you are having fun with any sport,” Terenzi says to younger athletes. “Winning and getting all the accolades are fun but if you are not having fun, what’s the point?”
Terenzi’s enthusiasm for lacrosse is obvious, it just so happens that as one of the best players in the country, his talent matches his passion and work ethic.
“There is nothing negative about Joey,” Chanenchuk said. “If you had a team full of Joey Terenzis you would never lose.”
Sophia Vlahakis is a junior at Manhasset Secondary School and a contributing writer for the Manhasset Press