Mike Antinozzi, Fallston, lacrosse

Q & A //

April 15, 2010|By Glenn Graham, The Baltimore Sun

Senior Mike Antinozzi has built an impressive resume in the classroom and on the playing fields at Fallston, where he has maintained a 3.8 grade-point average and excelled in lacrosse and soccer. There's one final thing he would like to accomplish before he graduates in June — winning a state title. Antinozzi, four-year varsity midfielder in lacrosse, and the Cougars fell short in the title game in his freshman year and haven't been back. The past two years in soccer — he led the team in scoring this fall — the team made back-to-back state title-game appearances only to lose on penalty kicks and then in overtime. The lacrosse season brings another great opportunity to break through as the No. 8 Cougars are 9-0 with Antinozzi leading the way with 28 goals and 15 assists. Set to play lacrosse at Binghamton, Antinozzi plans to study pre-med. At Fallston, Antinozzi is a member of the Student Government Association, is a peer tutor in math and will perform in a talent show Friday.

Question: Is there any more urgency this spring to win a state title with this being your last chance?

Answer: With this being my last opportunity, it definitely drives me a little insane that we haven't won a state title yet. I definitely think we can do it this year, and it definitely adds to my drive.

Q: How tough was it losing the state title game a second straight year in soccer in the fall?

A: It was heartbreaking. Even though we lost, though, we knew we gave it our best. It honestly wasn't too bad, and I was surprised at that. All the seniors and juniors were all good friends, and I think that helped that we were close.

Q: What have sports meant to you over the years?

A: It's been my life from Day One. My first word was "ball!" Sports has kept me going in a positive direction, and I owe my parents a lot because they've always been there for me. I've always worked hard, and I owe that to them. Sports is just a time where you can let everything out.

Q: So "ball" was the first word you spoke?

A: Yeah, my mom told me. I think they were kind of disappointed it wasn't "mom" or "dad" (laughs), but it was "ball." Whenever someone asks me about sports, I always have to bring that up.

Q: Outside of sports, what's it like seeing your senior year winding down?

A: It's scary. I'm excited to graduate and move on to college, but I definitely don't want to leave high school, either. I have all my friends here, all the teachers are great and especially Mr. [Joseph] Schmitz, our principal, is one of the greatest guys I've ever met. So leaving all this behind is going to be real hard, but you have to move on.

Q: How did you decide on Binghamton?

A: Binghamton was one of my only Division I offers for lacrosse. The thing I liked about it was my dream has always been to play D-I lacrosse. I could have gone to like a Washington [College] or a St. Mary's and gotten a lot of playing time, and I think I can get some good playing time at Binghamton, too. But it was just the idea of playing D-I lacrosse.

Q: What would you like to become after college?

A: I want to be a trauma doctor. I want to be in the emergency room saving lives. My mom's a nurse, and just seeing her doing everything, it helped make me realize that's what I wanted to do.

Q: What's the best advice you've received?

A: I live by the motto, "You can, you must, you will." It came from my grandfather — he passed away [in] November 2008, and I write that on all my sticks, my cleats and everything. It's an emotional topic, but I dedicate every game to him. I prayed probably seven or eight times on the sideline at the Hereford game to him, just giving us the strength to finally beat them. He said that all while I was growing up, and it stuck in my mind more.

Q: How rewarding is it to help other students when you tutor?

A: It's a great feeling. I'll talk to their teacher and they'll say they aren't doing very well. And then after I help them, the kid will come up to me and be like, "Oh, my gosh, I got an ‘A' on my test." That just makes my day.

Q: You say you can't sing or dance, but you signed up for a talent show coming up. What's it all about?

A: I'm actually a very outgoing person, so I like to do stuff like that. I'm in three acts. The one act, we're singing, and it's like 20 seniors and it's all our good friends and none of us can really sing except one girl. The other one is eight of us, and we're doing a dance to a mix. I can't dance, I'm a terrible dancer, but it's still fun. And there's another dance that I was asked to do, so I'm doing that, too.

Q: What are the key elements to being a good leader?

A: You definitely have to be able to communicate with everybody — the coaches and the players. You don't necessarily have to be the best player, but you definitely have to stand your ground and you have to have respect. And I think you also have to be a good friend to everybody.

Q: When you're coming home from college next year, what is the first thing you'll ask your mother to make you for dinner?

A: Her chicken ring. It's the greatest meal I've ever eaten. It's a circle stone — you take crescent rolls and you put it on there, and then you put chicken, cheese and cream of mushroom soup. I get so happy when she makes it. My mom is the greatest cook in the world — I think she needs to get her own show.

glenn.graham@baltsun.com

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