Alumnus earns ESPN top play

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Drew Westervelt carries the ball up the firled while playing for the Denver Outlaws. During Westervelt’s senior year at JC, the men’s lacrosse team won the MIAA ‘B’ Conference regular season championship.

Miranda Ripken, Sports Editor

The Denver Outlaws, a professional lacrosse team, has a familiar face on their roster. Drew Westervelt, class of ’03, was acquired in the 2007 Major League Lacrosse (MML) Collegiate Draft. Westervelt plays attack for the Outlaws. In his most recent year, Westervelt and his teammate Jarrett Park earned the ESPN Top Play. The play consisted of Park passing the ball behind his back to Westervelt. As the ball travelled toward Westervelt, he jumped and, while airborne, caught it and shot it into the back of the net.

In his senior year season at JC, Westervelt scored 41 goals and 30 assists.  He had eight games where he scored three or more goals. The Patriots won the MIAA “B” Conference regular season championship that year, and Westervelt scored five goals that game to put the Patriots over the top. At the time, his coaches were Keith Hinder and Matt Blair. Westervelt recalls this as his favorite lacrosse memory.

“I actually remember the game before the championship. We played Park and we had a come-from-behind win. It made us feel confident for the next game,” Westervelt said.

Westervelt also played JC soccer and basketball, making the All-County team for two seasons in both sports. Among these honors, he was named the Harford County co-Player of the Year and was on the Baltimore Sun All-Metro team.

“High school sports are fun because the time commitment isn’t as serious as college. I looked forward to the time out of the classroom every day,” Westervelt said.

His college years, Westervelt played lacrosse full-time. He finished his senior season at University of Maryland Baltimore County as the nation’s fifth-leading scorer with an average of 4.18 points. He is also ranked third in the country with 2.12 assists. He was selected to the America East All-Rookie team as a freshman, second-team All-Conference as a sophomore, and the second-team All-America East his junior year.

“My favorite thing about playing lacrosse is the people you meet. It’s a tight knit community . . . When I was playing lacrosse, I never thought about playing professionally,” Westervelt said.

Westervelt was selected by Denver as the fourth overall pick in the 2007 MLL Draft. During his rookie year, he earned a team-high 14 assists and was fourth in goals scored. Westervelt’s third year on the team earned him an MLL All Star selection and was named the Bud Light MVP honoree for the week of July 18.

Westervelt’s time at JC had a huge impact on him after he graduated. As he plays with the Outlaws, he remembers the lacrosse atmosphere at JC fondly.

“To be honest, when I think back [to my high school years], some of my greatest memories and best friends are from JC,” Westervelt said.

Miranda Ripken is a Sports Editor for The Patriot and jcpatriot.com.