Cordisco sets his sights on D-I lax
Published 1:42 pm, Thursday, September 2, 2010
Robbie Cordisco is tough for his opponents to stop because he's quick and athletic. A captain for the Weston boys lacrosse before graduating in June, he was a First Team All-SWC and All-State selection with 35 goals, 15 assists for 50 points and 59 ground balls in leading Weston to the Class S title.
"Part of my goals at the beginning of the season was to be All-SWC and All-State it feels good," Cordisco said. "I love the game and I don't mind putting in the extra hard work into it. Ever since I was little, I put in the time to be the best I can be."
During the summer, he'd practice his shooting at the net and passing against the wall for three to five hours a day.
"I always had a stick in my hand," Cordisco said. "It was fun and it helped me get to where I am today."
What makes Cordisco effective on the field is his speed. He has blazing speed and left many opponents in the dust with his fake moves and ability to juke past them.
"I use it to my advantage as much as I can and part of it is genetics," he said. "I run hard in practice and did a lot of sprints. It's something I felt I could improve on with a lot of practice. I learned you have to play to a guy's weakness and lacrosse is 90 percent mental. You have to be smart and see if you can create something. My dodges sometimes draw's someone else's man and it helps a teammate get open and creates an opportunity for us."
Possessing a lethal shot makes him dangerous to defend. When he shoots from point-blank range or from the top of the circle, he's zing it hard and usually to the open part of the net.
"Shooting is pretty much all about practice," says Cordisco. "It's about repetition, going out with a bucket of balls and taking 300 shots. Shooting is all about form too and I'm trying to perfect it and work on it too."
Cordisco is on the money with his passes. His ability to remain poised and patient while looking for an open teammate, coupled with his vision, enhanced his accuracy in feeding his teammates.
"It's something I want to work on to become a better feeder," he said. "Being a quarterback in football helped me see the field. Passing is also about chemistry and knowing the strength of your teammates so you can figure out how to get the ball in their hands and give them an opportunity to make a play. If the coach says they will key on me, I try to draw the double team and triple team so I can get the pass off."
When the opportunity arose, he picked up many ground balls. He credits Trojan assistant coach for his ability to win this battle in the trenches.
"Ground balls are all about hustle and effort," says Cordisco. "You don't have to be a talented player to get a ground ball. It's a matter of who wants it more. Usually the team with the most ground balls wins the game."
Despite only being 5-8, 155-pounds, he's tough in the trenches and won battles against kids who are taller than 6-feet and weigh more than 200 pounds. Cordisco's fearless play and ability to remain resilient despite absorbing a hit from a bigger player has made him even tougher to contend with.
"Sometimes, you have to be smart while playing against the bigger kids," he said. "When I go low for a ground ball, I try to get in the best position and sometimes, I draw a pushing call."
An injured right wrist sidelined Cordisco for most of his sophomore season, which was tough to handle emotionally because he likes to play. This year, an injured right ankle hampered him but he still played in every game but four. In those games against the weakest teams in the league, he and head coach John Matthews elected to sideline him as a precaution.
Playing in pain never fazed him.
"It's all mental," says Cordisco. "Once you are in a game, your adrenaline takes over."
Life on the lacrosse field began for him at age 8. He chose to play because his cousins, Chris and Jeff Cordisco, Were the captains at Syracuse University (Class '99) and influenced him to play it. The younger Cordisco enjoyed watching them play for the Orangemen.
Growing up, he played baseball from ages 5-11 and basketball and football at age 8 and through high school. He took off his first three years in high school from basketball before joining the team as a senior.
Cordisco was the quarterback for Weston's football team and was a lethal passer and scrambler.
"Working a lot with my dad, helped," he said. "He [his father, Rob Cordisco Sr.] came from one of the best football teams in New York, North Rockland High School. He learned to pass there and passed it on to me. Football is a sport I love and I'll always love it."
The SWC football coaches were impressed with his play and selected him All-SWC Honorable Mention.
"All these awards are great but the best part is being with the guys and not the awards," he said.
On the hardcourt, he was sharp defensively and a consistent point guard. Cordisco took a three-year sabbatical from it because he wanted to focus on football and lacrosse but his friends asked him to play it and with a lighter workload, he contributed to the basketball team this year.
Leadership is a strength of his as he served as captain of the lacrosse team. He's a quiet kid and primarily led by example through his work ethic.
"It was fun," Cordisco said. "I like taking on a leadership role and it was good for me."
Academically, he was on the Honor Roll a few times and got many As and Bs. Math is his favorite subject.
"I was committed to both [academics and athletics] and I made the time," Cordisco said. "Work came first."
This fall, he'll do a post graduate year at Avon Old Farms and play lacrosse there. Cordisco might play basketball at Avon as well but his focus is strictly on lacrosse.
"It will be a good experience and I'll be coached by one of the best coaches [Skip Flanagan] in the country," he said.
Avon is ranked 12th nationally. After a year for the Winged Beavers, he plans on playing for a Division I college team and major in sports medicine or marketing. He hopes to build up his strength for college lacrosse by spending time in the weight room.
"Lacrosse is year round in college," says Cordisco. "You have to stay focused and motivated and be the best you can be."