Players to Watch: Junior Attacks

The L.A./Ventura area is loaded with junior attacks who have earned some impressive varsity credentials in their first two high school seasons. Even more are poised to break out this year after having been stuck behind excellent upperclassmen in previous seasons.

For the purposes of selecting the three junior attacks to feature on this list, we looked for players who contributed at a very high level on very successful teams last season. There were a lot of them, but these three stood out:

Zac Asbury, Thousand Oaks

As a sophomore on a senior-dominated Lancers’ team that went 14-5 and reached the North bracket semifinals last spring, Asbury played like a veteran. He earned second-team All-Marmonte honors and posted some of his biggest performances in T.O.’s biggest games. Asbury scored three goals in an early-season, 7-6 overtime loss at Loyola; he had five in a late-season win over league-champion Westlake; and he contributed four in wild, 14-13 playoff loss to Crespi. With the size and strength to battle close defenders around the crease, he also possesses a rocket shot if given space on the perimeter.

Austin Lowi, Palos Verdes

Coach Jimmy Borell calls Lowi “an unbelievably hard worker,” noting that he became the first attackman ever to win the team’s “Iron Sea King” award in the weight room. A starter as a freshman, Lowi tallied 39 points on 15 goals and 24 assists. He followed that last spring with 28 goals and 19 assists, earning second-team All-Bay League. In two varsity seasons, he has contributed to two North bracket championships. Lowi is adept at finding soft spots in a defense with subtle off-ball movement and has a quick release after receiving the feed. In September he committed to NCAA Division I Jacksonville.

Cory Lund, El Segundo

Lund scored 56 goals and recorded 68 assists last spring in leading high-scoring El Segundo (13-5), playing only its second season as a CIF program, to the Ocean League championship and a playoff win over Brentwood. His 124 points were No. 1 in the state among players with stats uploaded to The Eagles averaged 12.5 goals per game, and Lund contributed to seven of those, averaging three goals and four assists. Ocean League coaches voted him Offensive Player of the Year.

Also worth watching: Kyle Beachboard, Peninsula; Max Bulko, Oak Park (21 goals, 17 assists); Parker Furlong, Santa Monica (first-team All-Ocean as a freshman and a sophomore); Noah Gervasi, West Ranch (39 goals, 31 assists); Kyle Kennedy, Santa Monica (second-team All-Ocean); Jack Larkin, Palos Verdes (27 goals, 17 assists); Robbie McInerney, Newbury Park; Noah Miller, Agoura (15 goals, 12 assists); Lorenzo Santor, Oaks Christian (second-team All-Marmonte); Rob Willcox, West Ranch (41 goals).