By Chris Goldberg
TopLaxRecruits.com, Posted 7/20/20
Gaffer Elite 2021 goalie Carter Ruhm had to be creative to work on his ability to stop shots during the pandemic lockdown.
“It was really hard,” said Ruhm, from Vestal High (N.Y.). “There is nothing I like more than playing lacrosse with my friends. It was tough, but there also were some benefits.
“I was able to spend a lot of time on working to get better. During the heart of the (lockdown) I would go outside and throw shots off my chimney to myself. Once the fields started opening up I had friends shoot on me. I noticed, since it had been a month since I took a real shot, what I had lost.”
Ruhm got to work off the rust last weekend as he helped Gaffer finish 4-0 in a strong 2021 AA showing at the Victory Events Boys Summer Slam. Gaffer and Team Minnesota were the only undefeated teams.
“I had to work on getting back into it, mentally and physically,” said Ruhm, who along with Quinn Sullivan (Elmira) allowed just 13 goals in the four wins. “I hadn’t played organized lacrosse in months. It felt great being here with the guys.”
Ruhm said Gaffer – playing in its first tourney since the pandemic – got on track quickly after the first games together on Saturday.
“I feel like we really worked on communication from yesterday. The defense was a little lackluster the first couple games. We worked on talking and making sure everything is right, like who is going to slide and who is going to do this or that. We got the kinks out this weekend.”
What will Ruhm work on the rest of the summer?
“I will be working on everything,” he said. ” I will be taking shots as often as I can, and working on outlet passes.”
Gaffer closed Sunday’s play with an impressive 8-2 win over NJ Riot Mayhem. Cameron Krisko (Bingamton commit) had four goals and Kelly Dupree added two goals and three assists.
“It (losing the scholastic season) really sucked but I took the opportunity to get better,” said attackman Dupree, of Corning High. “I worked on my shooting and my off hand.
“We started off slowly here, but then it went much better. Overall, we worked together and the teamwork was good. We were sloppy at times but we got it together. It was great getting back out here with my friends.”
What is Dupree’s focus for the rest of the summer?
“I will just be working on getting better,” he said. “Almost everybody here has a goal to play in college and the only way is to get better.”
Krisko, from Chenango Valley, said he made the best of the loss of the high school season and the lockdown: “It kind of stunk, but I took it as an opportunity as well. Everybody in the country had the same situation – so it’s a matter of who works the hardest when there is no season.”
How was it to get back on the field?
“It was great – we all work really well together and there is bonding on and off the field,” he said. “That’s what makes a team, togetherness and no selfishness.”