By John Grimaldi
A former Cold Spring Harbor Seahawk has been ranked as one of the nation's top freshman lacrosse players after his rookie campaign at Fairfield University.
Colin Burke, a 2015 Cold Spring Harbor grad, was named the second best freshman in the country by Inside Lacrosse, a lacrosse media magazine, website and ESPN affiliate.
Lloyd Harbor-native Burke played attack at Fairfield this past season, scoring 46 goals, most ever by a Stag freshman in a single season, and two behind Spencer Steele for most all-time in a single season. Burke’s 63 total points were the sixth most all-time in a single season.
“I was in town and I got a call from my Dad when the rankings came out,” Burke said in an interview last week. “I remember at the beginning of the season I was 18 then went up to 12 and ended at 2, it’s crazy.”
As a senior at Cold Spring Harbor, Burke was pursued by Fairfield Head Coach Andy Copelan.
“We knew he was a good player, but he exceeded all expectations we had for him,” Copelan said. “We love him.”
Burke was the only player on the Stags roster to record a point in every game this season, the Stags finished 9-8 overall but lost to Towson in the Colonial Athletic Association Championship.
“He loves lacrosse, and just understands the game, he has a maturity about him that a lot of freshman don’t have, he’s a big time performer and you don’t see that kind of poise from all freshman,” Copelan said.
Moving forward, Copelan wants to see even more from Burke when he returns as a sophomore.
“We want him to… evolve in that QB role, adjust and watch as teams try to play him,” he said. “We want him to be a little more vocal and grab the reigns of this team.”
Burke has also been recognized as a United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association All-America Honorable Mention, Rookie of the Year for the Colonial Athletic Association conference and was the first freshman to be named CAA Player of the Year, sharing the honor with Towson junior Ryan Drenner.
This was the third year in a row that a Fairfield player earned the conference’s rookie of the year award; David Fleming and Will Fox were the previous two.
Burke attributed much of his success to his teammates, specifically citing senior midfielders TJ Neubauer and Charlie Schnider.
“They did a really good job of just putting me in the right spot,” Burke said. “I think Charlie assisted me on like half my goals.”
Burke has also been in touch with some of his former teammates at Cold Spring Harbor. He was able to watch earlier this month when the Seahawks won their second straight New York State Class ‘C’ championship.
“I thought they played really well. Coming off last year, they have a lot of really great players. Just to watch them win, it made me really happy,” Burke said. “Coach [Dennis] Bonn could be a little tough, but you stick through it and good things will happen.”
Burke played three years of varsity lacrosse at Cold Spring Harbor under coach Bonn.
In an interview last week, Bonn said Burke “made great strides as a senior -- he was off the charts.”
Bonn continued, “I don’t think anyone could have envisioned the success he had. The jump from high school to college is unbelievable let alone the quality teams he’s been facing. Hopefully he continues to grow as a player and a student athlete at Fairfield.”