LAX to the MAX
Issue 15, Volume 112
By Yashna Patel
Name: Anthony Ragone Moletteri
Hair Color: Brown
Eye Color: Blue
Date of Birth: 12/28/2004
When and how did you start playing lacrosse? How long have you been on the Peglegs, the Stuyvesant varsity lacrosse team?
I started playing in fifth grade because one of my friends was playing for an out-of-school club called the Brooklyn Crescents. He stopped after a few weeks, but I stuck with it and kept playing throughout middle school. I have played on the Peglegs since freshman year.
What inspired you to join the lacrosse team here at Stuyvesant?
On the Brooklyn Crescents, we went to a lot of tournaments across the Northeast which was really fun, and I got really into the sport. I knew I wanted to play for fun in high school before coming to Stuyvesant. As an incoming freshman, I also watched a Stuyvesant lacrosse game at a field near my house and met a couple of players, so I knew I was going to try out once I started high school.
Do you participate on an outside team, and how does your experience on the Stuyvesant team differ?
I used to play for the Brooklyn Crescents outside of school. I definitely connected less with the players on my club team compared to the people on the Stuyvesant lacrosse team. But the Crescents team also has more skilled players.
What position do you play, and what skills/strengths are involved?
I play attack, which is similar to a striker in soccer. It is mostly about agility, quick movements with your stick and your feet, being able to dodge defenders, change direction and speed really quickly, and of course score goals.
Do you have a most memorable/proud moment with the Peglegs?
This year, my proudest moment with the Peglegs was being able to see all the new players who I recruited or my friends recruited, who had never picked up a stick before, be able to learn how to catch, throw, and run with the ball. They are really starting to look like they have some idea of what they are doing.
What is your strategy for constantly improving yourself (specific workouts, exercises, mentality, etc.)?
For lacrosse, doing wall ball is one of the most important drills to improve. I have a specific routine that includes 50 reps with my right hand, 50 reps with my left hand, 50 reps switching hands, and then I mess around and whatever. This helps a lot with stick skills and being able to improvise on the field. I think as far as mentality goes, not getting too down on yourself is important. As an attackman and captain, there is a lot of pressure to score goals. In games, if I feel like I have not been scoring enough, it is really easy to think that I am letting the team down. But I try to stay optimistic as much as possible, which really helps.
What challenges did you face this season?
I think at the beginning of the season, it was getting people to join the team, especially since lacrosse is not very popular in the city. Right now, I think actually winning games is our biggest challenge.
How do you think the Stuyvesant lacrosse team has changed you as an athlete/person?
Being on the team has helped me mature a lot, especially socially. Through playing, I gained a set of people I can rely on all the time. My teammates are most of my closest friends, which is very different from when I played before high school, so the Stuyvesant team has helped me grow a lot as a person.
How has being captain changed your outlook on the game?
When I was in middle school, I was never one of the best players on my lacrosse team, so I had never expected to be captain before. So, I think it really helped with my own self-confidence and believing that I am actually a good player. Being captain has also helped me understand what other players are going through. When someone does not slide fast enough, messes up on defense, or misses a shot, there is always a degree of annoyance with them, because if they had not made that mistake the game could have ended differently. However, as captain, you have the responsibility to always be optimistic and always leave a good impression on for your team.
Are there any short-term goals you’d like to accomplish in the next month going into the end of the season?
For our last few games, I just want to score some really fun goals and have some really fun games. At the beginning of the year, we were not even sure if we would get to play, so now I just want to make the best of it since we did get to have a season. A specific goal, though, would be to score five goals in one game.
Do you have any plans to continue the sport in the future or in college?
I am hopefully going to play club in college. I don't plan on playing Division 3 lacrosse, but I definitely am going to stay with it for fun.
How do you balance lacrosse and schoolwork?
As a freshman, joining the team was definitely an adjustment. My middle school had no homework compared to Stuyvesant, but having practices and games that I had to be at forced me to work whenever I have the chance and helped my time management. But, I would say this year, as a senior, I have forgotten how to do work.
Do you have any pregame superstitions or rituals?
I always get really stressed before games, so James Lee, one of the other captains on the team, and I have a handshake we always do.
Do you have a specific warm-up routine? What is it?
I always try to do both dynamic and static stretches. I always do high knees, butt-kicks, toe touches, butterflies, mostly targeting the leg muscles. I also do arm circles a lot, just to get myself loose so I can dodge better.
What is your jersey number? What made you decide that number?
My jersey number is 31. I was given the number in ninth grade and freshmen did not really get many choices. I have had the same number ever since.
Funniest Teammate? James Trachuk, Israel Pina
Favorite Lacrosse Team? Stuyvesant Peglegs
Favorite Lacrosse Player? Mike Powell
Favorite Sports Drink: Cold water!
Hobbies? Violin, Drums
Motto to Live By: “Get your money up, not your funny up”
Fun Fact: I have two moms