One-on-One: Michael McCormack ‘15 - Mount Greylock - Lacrosse
If you have not heard of Mount Greylock (Williamstown, Mass.) attackman Michael McCormack '15, you better start doing your homework. The junior scoring-machine is the state's leading scorer with 169 points (117 goals and 52 assists) so far this season.
McCormack is only 13 points shy of Grant Whiteway's single season points record of 182. Whiteway, who starred for the Billerica Indians and now the UMass Minutemen, accomplished that feat during his senior season in 2011.
McCormack is also on pace to break Massachusetts' all-time scoring record. The record of 577 career points is currently held by Duxbury legend Max Quinzani. The impressive mark was established in 2006 while Quinzani starred for the Duxbury Dragons.
McCormack has put up some jaw-dropping numbers of his own in his almost three seasons, playing attack and midfield, for the young Mount Greylock program. McCormack has a total of 253 goals and 156 assists for 409 points, with the 2014 tourney and a senior season still ahead of him.
The 6-foot-1,175 lb. McCormack is no newcomer to the game of lacrosse, however, having grown up in the sport, as his father, George McCormack, is the head coach of the Williams College Ephs.
We caught up with McCormack, for a One-on-One interview, as Mount Greylock prepares for their quarter-final match-up with St. Bernard's on Saturday, at 4 p.m. to start their MIAA tournament mission:
You and your teammates have put up some impressive offensive numbers this season. Can you touch a little on your team’s offensive philosophy and overall offensive execution and production this season?
Our offensive philosophy is to be up tempo in transition and to be patient with our six on six offense. We are dodging to score, but always looking for the extra pass as well. With most of the teams in our league we have a lot of transition opportunities, so whenever we have the chance at a settled possession, we are trying to take advantage of it. So far with all of the threats we have from attack and middie we have really produced.
As you and your teammates prepare for the 2014 State Tournament, what are some things that you guys can take from last year's tournament experience that can help you this year?
Last year we learned a great deal from the games against Minnechaug and South Hadley. We have to take it one game at a time and not take any team easily. With the fact that there is a new division this year, I think we have a much greater chance at a title. We know what we are capable of and are preparing game by game.
You have put up some staggering individual numbers in your first three years at Mt. Greylock. Can you talk a little about your individual numbers and accomplishments and what you can attribute your success to?
I think the individual numbers are attributed a lot to my teammates. Without them I would not have the points I do today. Our defense has been really strong the past three years, so that allows my teammates and I on offense to really control the ball most of the time. Also, I think just always working on my stick skills and being in the weight room year round has helped.
McCormack's 2013 Highlights
Lacrosse is a big family sport in the McCormack household? Groweing up in the game, how influential has your family been on your lacrosse growth and success?
When I first moved to Williamstown there wasn’t a lacrosse program. My Dad really helped in the process of getting teams together and my old coach, Jeff Stripp, took it from there. He had a stick in my hands from the time I was in kindergarten and I just loved the game ever since. My two brothers and I have been playing together in our backyard and on teams for basically our whole lives. Being that my dad is the coach at Williams, I am always surrounded by the game and have learned a great deal from him. Playing with my older brother for two years, and now my younger brother as well on the varsity level has been awesome. It has been great to be in a family that is all about the game and pushing me to grow as a player.
What current or past college or pro player would you compare your game to? Who do you follow and look up to in the game?
I don’t think I could compare my style of play to any single player. Since I have to face off, I play midfield as well as attack, so I am always dodging from all around the field, unlike a majority of college and professional players. I really enjoy watching Rob Pannell from Cornell in regards to his dodging and play from behind the net. He is by far my favorite player and I loved watching him during his time in college. I also have really followed the Thompsons at U Albany this year. They are transcending the game with all the flashy shots and I think they’re going to leave quite a big impact because of the success they have had.
Being a developing Varsity program that has experienced a lot of initial success in three seasons, what has teh growth of Mounmt Greylock lacrosse been like?
Our first varsity lacrosse season was my freshman year. We had a club team before that, which was very successful. Unlike a lot of teams in our league, we have experience from playing from such young ages. Most teams did not have youth programs like we did, and I think that has led to the success we have had.
What some of your individual and team goals are for this season and beyond?
Individually, my goals are always to grow as a player. I am always working on my stick skills and off hand. As far as the team, we definitely want to set high goals for this year and the next as well. We will be taking it one game at a time, but the overall goal is always to win a western/ central mass championship and then move on to the state tournament. As the season progresses we are trying to become more offensively and defensively sound and work better as a unit.
Talk about your off-season. Do you play other sports and what are your plans for the summer with lacrosse?
I don’t think I really have an off-season. In the fall I play football, in the winter I play basketball, and in the spring and summer I play lacrosse. I plan on doing 2 or 3 camps and playing for the Long Island Sting travel team as I have for the past two years. This summer I am more focused on going to certain camps and showcases that the colleges I am interested are going to be at more than just playing in a lot of different ones.
How has the college recruiting process gone to date and can you share some insight on the best way to manage the process as a junior student-athlete?
I am interested in finding a school that I can see myself at academically, socially, and athletically. Being able to play lacrosse at the college level would be the icing on the cake in regards to my college experience. Right now I am interested in a couple of different schools, but I am keeping all of my options open. For anyone going through the process I think it is important to always keep your grades up because that helps a lot with getting into any of the schools and also to not feel pressured by the process. Keeping all your options open and finding the school that is right for you is not always easy and will take some time.
What is something that most people do not know about you?
I am a lefty in everything and every sport except basketball. I write lefty, throw lefty, swing a bat lefty, yet I shoot a basketball righty. I have no idea how or why.
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