Gabe Zappia ‘21 has contributed significantly to North Cross’ varsity lacrosse team with seven years being on the team.
“I would say my favorite experience at North Cross was athletics and the friends I have made.” Zappia said during an email interview. “The Football and lacrosse coaches and some faculty that I talked with in fifth grade assured me I would get a good education and have a great experience playing sports. Also, Geist Pollock was my ambassador when I visited North Cross and he did a great job recruiting me.”
Christopher Pollock, head coach of boys varsity lacrosse, acknowledges Zappia’s potential for a professional lacrosse career.
“Gabe is a tremendous player on the lacrosse team,” Pollock said. “He has been a starter since the 9th grade and brings speed, stick skills and a great lacrosse ID to the team. He plays both attack and midfield for the team and has great potential as he moves onto Flagler College.”
One of Zappia’s fellow lacrosse teammates, Carlton Ward ‘21, shares Pollock’s sentiment on Zappia being a great contributor and motivator for the team.
“Gabe brings a lot of energy to the team everyday at practice,” Ward said. “He pushed his teammates to compete and try to get better. I've been playing with Gabe for 5 years now and he’s always had that energy.”
Zappia’s best memories throughout his years in North Cross are all from the moments he shared with his teammates.
“...I have three favorite moments in my sports career,” Zappia said. “The first was winning the lacrosse state championship as a freshman because I had a great time playing/celebrating with the team and my brother made the shot to win the game with one second left, I will never forget that. The second was winning the football state championship as a junior because I had a lot of great friends and the whole team had good chemistry. That meant a lot to me because I have practiced with the varsity team since the 7th grade and started playing when I was around 6. The other best experience was the bus ride home after losing the football state championship in my sophomore year. It was not a good feeling after losing, but we bonded and had a good time thinking about the best moments during the season.”
Ward states that the enthusiasm of Zapppia leaves a profound impression on new players for the team. Zappia pushes the players out of their comfort zone and to try out new things.
Zappia seems to reflect Ward’s statement. He gives new players important advice for the upcoming future.
“My advice for future lacrosse players is to do a lot of wall ball and build chemistry with the whole team to play better and make friendships.” Zappia said. “Also, work hard and win some more state championships for the school.”
Pollock has enjoyed watching Zappia develop and offers Zappia some advice for college.
“My advice for Gabe is to take advantage of every opportunity he will get by playing college lacrosse.” Pollock said. “Be a great teammate and leader. Listen to your coaches and work hard. He picked Flagler as he knows he will get an opportunity to play right away. Work hard this summer before you get to school and everything will take care of itself.”
Written by Kevin Dinh