Being able to build a network of alumni, friendship that lasts a lifetime, being able to play the sport that you love in a competitive arena, all of which are a part of playing lacrosse in college.
We had the chance to speak with head coach of the Boston College Men’s Lacrosse team Peter Sessa about playing lacrosse at a renowned school such as BC.
Coach Sessa just finished his first year with BC and brings a vast coaching experience at the DIII collegiate level as well as having international experience. He was awarded First Team All-Pilgrim and All-Academic twice as well as two-time Strength and Conditioning Athlete of the Year at his alma mater Springfield College.
Speaking to his experience abroad, Coach Sessa was Local Development Officer for the English Lacrosse Association after he graduated. He coached and played for the Reading Wildcats, where they set a club record of 12 wins. In addition to playing overseas, Sessa led three university teams as the Head Coach: the Royal Holloway University, Southampton University and Reading University.
Once back in the United States, Sessa returned to his alma mater for the 2012 season as the Defensive Coordinator, Face-Off and Goalie Coach. That season the Pride’s defense had the 5th best save percentage and 10th best man-down unit in the country. The Pride’s defense came in at #15 in D-III. He was recognized as a Finalist for the IMCLA D-III Outstanding Assistant Coach of the Year Award.
From there, Sessa headed to Saint Leo University where he led the top face-off specialist in D-II to a 70% win percentage and a defense that averaged 8.2 goals against per game.
Having such a vast involvement in lacrosse and world travel, Coach Sessa brings a unique perspective to MCLA Boston College lacrosse along with insight on college and the lacrosse experience.
1.What advice do you have for players interested in MCLA schools?
Make sure you are training as much as you are playing, don’t just rely on showcases to be the one place you improve your game. Being proactive is very important. Email your highlight film to us that include your top 15-20 plays and keep it around 2 ½ minutes long. Highlight films are a great door opener, but remember, a coach is going to need to see you play live more than once. If you are a multisport athlete, make sure you express that to us because we do find that valuable.
2.What is the best way for players to get on your recruiting radar?
Prospect days are definitely the best way to get noticed because at the prospect camp, you are able to get in front of the entire coaching staff. We send out one or two coaches to other tournaments, but at our prospecting days, every coach is present. You have to remember, every coach is different and to be open-minded. Some schools finish up their recruiting early, and some keep spots open for late commits. You should have a broad selection of schools to ensure that if your top choices don’t work out, you will have another that suits your academic, social and lacrosse needs. Keep in mind that with so many lacrosse programs available at great schools, there is a school that is a fit for you and seeking the best experience should be your main objective, not so much what level of lacrosse you play.
3. What type of players do you primarily look for, a raw athlete or refined lacrosse player?
All of the above. We look for players with character. We also look for different types of players to complete the makeup of the team, someone who brings a unique aspect to the team that will innately improve the other players and build a strong team bond. When selecting players, we tend to “go with our gut” and choose whichever player makes the most sense to our organization. Once again, every school is different.
4. What areas of player development would you recommend West Coast players focus on to elevate their game?
Get out and play. Summer league is very good because you compete against talented players. Take note of what other players around you are doing as well and learn from them. My biggest suggestion for elevating a player’s game is box lacrosse. Box lacrosse teaches you how to take checks and be tougher. Being able to be comfortable with the physicality of the sport and use it to your advantage, you will be able to fair much better on the field. I also recommend stepping away from lacrosse and “taking a breather” for a little, then getting back into it. Every player has his own needs and being self-aware of those needs or areas of opportunity is crucial for proper development.
5. How has the accelerated recruiting landscape impacted your approach to recruiting?
It hasn’t impacted us too much, people play for us because they want to be at BC and we don’t have to recruit too intensely. I reach out to 95% of people that contact me. We don’t actively “chase down” players because we would rather players that are interested in our school organically than try to convince someone to come play for us because at the end of the day, anything can happen with coaching staff, injuries etc. so we want the player to love the school first and the lacrosse program second.
ConnectLAX is a third party recruiting service and not affiliated with or endorsed by Peter Sessa or Boston College.