The Cornell men’s lacrosse team is poised to come back stronger than ever next season with a talented group of recruits committed to play next year, headlined by four national stars.
Under the leadership of former Cornell lacrosse star and new head coach, Connor Buczek ’15, the Red seem ready to build on their legacy of dominance. In the past decade alone, Cornell has won the conference regular season championship four times, the conference tournament two times and has appeared in the NCAA tournament five times.
Before the 2020 season was cut short because of the pandemic, the Red were off to a perfect 5-0 against opponents and garnered the No. 2 spot in the NCAA rankings, which included a dramatic last second 18-17 victory against 2019 NCAA No. 1 Penn State University.
The cancellation of the 2021 season prevented the Red from showing off their 2020 recruiting class, ranked No. 7 in the nation by Inside Lacrosse. Cornell’s additions to the Class of 2024 featured two five-star recruits, No. 9 C.J. Kirst and No. 13 Jack Follows, as well as seven four-star and two three-star recruits.
The 2020 recruiting class held six of the top 60 recruits in the country and could play a major role in the Red’s success moving forward, alongside a slate of strong recruits from this year’s graduating class.
According to Inside Lacrosse 2021, Cornell’s new recruitment class ranks eighteenth in the nation, receiving commitments from three of the top 100 ranked recruits. Danny Caddigan, Christopher Cappelmann and Sean Fox, who are ranked 41st, 64th and 99th respectively, have all signed on to play for the Red next spring.
On the offensive front, 5’10” righty attackman Danny Caddigan should provide a scoring boost for the Red with his creative goal-scoring and the ability to collect tough passes. Caddigan is a four-star recruit hailing from New York’s Smithtown West High School and was on Long Island’s Team 91 2021 Ambush.
Fellow four-star recruit Chris Cappelmann, a former teammate of Caddigan’s, comes from a similar background, as he attends Smithtown East High School and is a member of Long Island’s Team 91 2021 Blaze. Cappelmann will help serve a major role for the Red as one of the top faceoff midfielder recruits in the country. He is known as a strong leader who excels in transition, is tough in contact, and can score from long distance.
Cornell will also gain depth at the vital longstick midfielder position from Sean Fox. Though Fox is unorthodox for the position at a small build of 5’4”, 110 lbs, he has proved his worth as an elite stickhandler with good motor skills. A transfer from Fairfield College Preparatory to The Taft School, Fox also has played for the Eclipse Lacrosse Club since 2019, where he excelled in getting groundballs and causing turnovers.
Rounding out the four-star recruits for the Red is midfielder Antonio Topouzis, who graduated in 2020 but is currently taking a gap year before coming to Cornell in the fall of 2021. Topouzis attended La Salle Academy of Providence, RI, before transferring to Deerfield Academy in Massachusetts for the 2020 season.
Topouzis stood out on the Laxachusetts Black in 2019 and 2020, helping lead the team to the National Lacrosse Federation Championship semifinal in July 2019. He is naturally left-handed but can play ambidextrous, which defines his reputation as a creative player.
In addition to the quartet of four-star recruits, Cornell has also received commitments from other standouts in the class of 2021. Midfielders Alex Holmes, Michael Bozzi and Chris Davis, as well as defenseman Jayson Singer and goalie Wyatt Knust, are all committed to joining Cornell in the fall.