Bel Air's Jones a different breed of midfielder

Sophomore, who works on horse farm during summer, seeks to be 'throwback middie'

father won national title with Towson

  • Bel Air sophomore Parker Jones has 24 goals, 15 assists and 88 ground balls for the Bobcats, who are aiming to make a run at a state title.
Bel Air sophomore Parker Jones has 24 goals, 15 assists and 88… (Steve Ruark / Photo for The…)
May 11, 2011|By Glenn Graham, The Baltimore Sun

Playing midfield for the No. 15 Bel Air boys lacrosse team, sophomore Parker Jones wants to make a difference every chance he gets. It could be scoring a goal, dishing out an assist, scooping up a ground ball or playing smart defense. If he had his choice, he would never leave the field. In his second year on varsity, Jones has 24 goals, 15 assists and 88 ground balls as the Bobcats (12-2) prepare for a run at a state title. In addition to lacrosse, Jones also was the team captain for the school's junior varsity basketball team last season, playing forward and guard.

Jones is a member of the Varsity Club and HOPE (Helping Other People Everywhere) Club. During the summer, he plays for the highly touted Baltimore Lacrosse Club and also works on a horse farm. Jones maintains a 3.5 GPA and is interested in meteorology

What is it about lacrosse?

My dad was a big lacrosse player. He played at Towson, and they won a national championship when they played in Division II. That got me kind of pumped when he said that, so I always wanted to be like him, grow up and hopefully have that kind of game experience.

After a successful freshman season, how did that help you this year?

I'm a lot more confident. I feel like I've gotten stronger and faster, and I realize it's all about the speed of the game at varsity. I tried hard in the offseason, in the summer, to work at my game and try to be the best I can be.

What is your role on the team at midfield?

I feel like my role is to control the offense, slow it down and get the ball to the offense. And on defense, just play sound defense, be yourself and help the team. My dad has been talking to me about being a throwback middie — they play offense and defense. That's what I want to do. I don't want to be a guy that comes off the field. I want to be the guy that's on offense and defense in those pressure situations when you need a big goal or a big stop.

With opponents knowing who you are after your fine freshman season, did that make things tougher this season?

It's tougher, but it's good for me because it's made me play harder, and that's made me improve. As the season is going on, I'm not afriad to do things that maybe as a freshman I was afraid to do. I'm taking chances, making some mistakes but learning to get better.

What has been your best high school moment on the lacrosse field so far?

Last year, we were playing Franklin and were down by a goal with 40 seconds left. We were swinging the ball around, and I came up top and got it on a dodge and shot it. It was the best on-the-run shot I ever took; we tied it up and then won in overtime.

You're involved in HOPE at school — how rewarding is it?

It feels really good because you're helping others that need it. When I was a kid, my grandfather worked at the Knights of Columbus, and he used to take me out on Thanksgiving and we would pass out turkey dinners. I realized how cool it was helping out others.

What's your day like working on the horse farm?

It's a tough job. I'll go in at 7 a.m., clean up the stalls and do all that, and then about noon we'll take the horses out and run them on the track with the jockeys. Then they come back, and we clean them off and feed them.

How has playing club lacrosse improved your game?

I love playing with those guys because they're all high-quality players. Just playing with guys that know the game — sometimes they'll tell me things, and other times I'll tell them some things and we all get better.

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