When coach Peter Burgess first saw Tyler Regnier play lacrosse as a seventh grader, he knew he was watching a special player for Sewanhaka High School.
“Me and my coaches knew he was the type of kid that we can build a team around,” said Burgess. “We said to ourselves ‘When is he going to play varsity?’”
Regnier ended up making the varsity team as a freshman and hasn’t looked back since, earning All-County honors last season as a junior defenseman.
“He’s a phenomenal defenseman,” Burgess said. “His stick work is good. He can use both hands right or left. He’s gotten in the weight room, so he’s a lot more physical and a lot more faster so he creates a lot of transition for us.”
Burgess also thinks a key in Regnier’s game is his versatility.
“Sometimes we play him on the wing during face-offs because he’s fast and aggressive,” Burgess said. “He can also sit back and neutralize guys if we need him to.”
Regnier started playing lacrosse as a third grader, when he played with the New Hyde Park Police Activity League (PAL), a youth lacrosse program.
“At first, I wasn’t too serious,” Regnier said. “But I just stuck with it, a lot of training, a lot of travel and a lot of practice made it happen.”
Regnier’s hard work paid off, as he will play for Rutgers University nest season, a NCAA Division I lacrosse program. Regnier said he chose Rutgers over the University at Albany, West Point Academy and Hofstra University.
“When I visited (Rutgers), it was just the atmosphere, it felt like home, it was perfect,” said Regnier, who will be studying criminal law and justice. “Signing there has been my biggest accomplishment so far.”
Another accomplishment Regnier hopes to obtain this year is a postseason berth for the Indians, who haven’t made the playoffs since his freshman season.
“We have a good chance this year,” said Regnier, who begins his senior season March 24 at Oyster Bay. “We have a lot of returning starters from last year, I think we have a lot of potential.”
Among the returning starters is Regnier’s younger brother, Trevor, a sophomore attacker, who led the team in assists a year ago.
When asked if he tries to give his younger brother some game advice from time to time, Tyler said, “I try to give him some pointers but he’s a little stubborn.”
As for coach Burgess, he sees Trevor Regnier’s future similar to that of his brother.
“His brother will be able to fill those shoes when he graduates,” said Burgess.
That’s good news for Sewanhaka.