ESPN’s Kessenich eyes a pair of area recruits from “non hot-bed” spots
In the second of two reports for Inside Lacrosse, ESPN analyst Quint Kessenich highlighted seven recruits who participated in the Warrior 40 at Harvard University from what he described as areas not traditionally known as fertile soil for lacrosse.
Kessenich, a contributor to The Sun, singled out Johns Hopkins recruit and goalkeeper Ahmed Iftikhar, who just wrapped up his junior season at Detroit Country Day School. According to Inside Lacrosse, the 5-foot-9 and 160-pound Iftikhar considered Penn, Yale and Harvard before agreeing to join the Blue Jays. This is what Kessenich wrote of Iftikhar:
“Iftikhar plays with one of the shortest shafts I’ve ever seen,” Kessenich said. “But he loves the ‘stubby’ for [its] light weight and ball-stopping benefits. He is technically sound. I like his stance and explosion to shots. He appeared better high than low in the limited time I was able to evaluate him. He led Detroit Country Day to a Division 2 state title and carries a 3.6 GPA in honors and AP courses. He was one of five US Lacrosse All-Americans playing in the Warrior 40. When the lights came on in practice and the game, Iftikhar delivered.”
Maryland recruit and midfielder Zack Fixen also impressed Kessenich. Fixen, who plays for Palos Verdes in California, was named a U.S. Lacrosse All American for the second consecutive year and the Offensive Player of the Year in the Bay League. Here is Kessenich’s summation of Fixen:
“Fixen won the obstacle course during the halftime skills competition with a time of 10.19 seconds, which in itself puts him on the map as an athlete,” Kessenich wrote. “He runs extremely well, played tough and with exceptional tempo and energy. His shooting skills against the elite players needs refinement, but that [comes] with time, experience and practice. So many of these young midfielders could run past their man, but very few could bury the rock on the run. Fixen’s athletic mold fits right into the ACC, whether he will be a first line midfielder or defensive midfielder will be answered with time.”