The first NLF Class of 2025 rankings continue!
Brendan Millon (McDonogh, Md. / Team 91 Maryland) headlines the rankings with the No. 1 overall ranking. Chris Alexis (Salisbury, Conn. / SweetLax Florida), Khalif Hocker (St. Xavier, Ohio / Resolute), Cam Kelley (Prime Time) and Josh Marcus (Staples, Conn. / Eclipse) round out the top five to headline the 2-10 group.
We’re back with Nos. 11-20. Check it out!
Schaller doesn’t have elite size, but does he ever make up for it with his skill and offensive ability. He started for two years at the Hill School (Pa.), where he racked up 35 goals and 26 assists for 61 points as a sophomore. Perhaps not so coincidentally, the Blues had two of their better seasons in recent memory with Schaller there. The younger brother of Hill alum, Maryland freshman defenseman and former five-star recruit Will Schaller, the tenacious lefty has outstanding vision, and his shiftiness and change-of-direction make him an incredibly tough cover up top. For a smaller guy, Schaller’s got a lot of pop on his shot and is a significant outside scoring threat. Schaller is headed back to his home state of Maryland to play for the two-time defending MIAA champion McDonogh Eagles.
Popham saw some time this spring on a Delbarton defense loaded with upperclassmen, and he figures to earn a starting job next season. For now, the son of Corey Popham, who backstopped Princeton to a 1996 national title and earned Most Outstanding Player honors in the process, is the best defensive player on the best club team in the country. Popham has a very high lacrosse IQ, communicates well and isn’t afraid to press way out on guys. He also has an excellent stick and has a knack for coming away with ground balls in traffic.
Giannetti is a tall, athletic pole who runs so well in the open field. He was an absolute terror at the IMLCA event in December as the best player on a team that reached the tournament final. An NLF at IMG All-Star, the 6-1, 170-pounder is aggressive with his checks in the middle of the field and is almost automatic off the ground when the ball hits the turf. His long strides enable him to gobble up a ton of ground. He flies in the open field and can push transition well as a result.
It’s a testament to just how good St. Anthony’s was that the Friars could afford to have McDonald play JV all year long. St. Anthony’s upperclassman-heavy defense meant that there was no room for an elite sophomore. First-world problems and what not.
As you might imagine, a five-star prospect going against JV competition was a little lopsided. The 6-foot, 150-pounder is a versatile chess piece that can play both up top and down low. He has excellent footwork and a terrific stick. The last time we saw McDonald against his graduation year, he was earning NLF at IMG tournament MVP honors. He throws timely checks and knows when to be opportunistic. Team 91 Shock coach Jimmy Mulé says that McDonald compares favorably to All-Ivy LSM and fellow 91 / St. Anthony’s product Greg Campisi (Harvard), if that gives you any indication of what kind of prospect McDonald is. Click here to read more about McDonald.
Drago is a major offensive mismatch whether he lines up at attack or midfield. He does plenty of both. The 6-1, 180-pounder racked up an even 100 points as a freshman on the strength of 62 goals and 38 assists. As a sophomore, he’s accrued 82 points and counting. His highest upside likely comes as a midfielder. The winter One Percent All-Star Game Offensive MVP is at his best using his deceptively quick feet and good size when he has extra space to work with up top. He’s got a hard, heavy shot and is also very good at finding the open man when he draws a slide.
A 6-2, 175-pounder who covers everybody’s No. 1 attackman, Iuliano had an excellent NLF at IMG campaign, picking up All-Star honors. He has terrific footwork and can stick with smaller attackmen, but also has the strength and power to go up against bigger scoring threats. Iuliano slides by trying to go through guys, not to just stop them, and is very good at putting the ball on the ground. A starter for Rye this year, he has vast upside and looks like a prototypical No. 1 defenseman at the next level.
Merrill’s been the offensive bellcow for the 91 Shock for quite a few years and he’s as dynamic an offensive midfielder as there is in the class. A 6-1, 170-pounder with long strides, Merrill has a quick first step and is a major scoring threat down the alley. He packs a powerful shot and is a terrific dodger. By the end of his sophomore year, Merrill was running on the second midfield line for the Friars and tallied goals against Connecticut powerhouses Darien and Staples. An NLF at IMG All-Star and the reigning summer One Percent All-Star Game Offensive MVP, Merrill has gamebreaker potential in any game he plays.
If you’re on the bubble for five-star honors and you want to put yourself over the edge, have the season that Seibel did as a sophomore for McDonogh. He took over the Eagles’ job midway through the season and never looked back, helping McDonogh to its second straight MIAA championship. His game-saving save against Boys’ Latin in the waning seconds of regulation of the league semifinals is the stuff of legends, an outrageously good kick save against one of the best shooters in the league.
Seibel also backstopped Team 91 Maryland to a title at the IMLCA event in December, playing the entire game in both playoff games and coming up with multiple highlight-reel stops. He’s listed at 6-2, 185 pounds, but his tall, wiry frame looks like it could easily handle another 30 pounds without a problem. Seibel is very effective in his movements and also has a flair for the dramatic stop.
The two-time defending ISL champions have an incredible goalie succession plan. Cornell senior commit Matt Tully was arguably the best goalie in the country this spring. He heads off to go play for the Ivy League regular-season champions, and in steps Train. The undersized lefty was out of this world this fall and continued with a terrific performance at NLF at IMG. He has clean footwork and exceptionally quick hands, and he also diagnoses plays really quickly. Train has shown a penchant for highlight-reel stops and he can steal a game in the blink of an eye.
Like Seibel, Raio played his way into five-star status with an outstanding sophomore campaign this spring. He was the man for Half Hollow Hills’ offense, racking up an incredible 60 goals and 30 assists as a midfielder, including 11 hat tricks. Raio also played great defense and made his impact felt all over the field. A 6-foot, 170-pounder, Raio is a smooth athlete who looks like he’s gliding on the field. His athleticism helps separate him in a strong midfield class and will have college coaches salivating this summer.