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Conrad, Kelly, Roesner excited for U-19 Lacrosse World Championships

Calvert Hall graduate Timmy Kelly won a national championship as a midfielder on the University of North Carolina lacrosse team on Memorial Day against the University of Maryland.

That once-in-a-lifetime experience might be matched, however, by claiming a gold medal for the 2016 U.S. Men’s National Under-19 Team that will compete in the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL) World Championships that begin July 7 and run through July 16 in British Columbia, Canada.

That’s his goal this summer. 

“I don’t know if anything can beat a national championship,” said Kelly, who also won a Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference title in 2012 as a freshman at Calvert Hall. “When you are thinking of it as a kid, you are kind of dreaming about it. For sure the World Championships are right up there with it. It’s a great one-two punch."

Kelly will get at least one big assist in his bid to help the U.S. Team capture a gold medal.

He’ll be playing with best friend and University of Virginia midfielder and Loyola Blakefield graduate Ryan Conrad, a fellow Lutherville resident.

That potent duo sparked the South All-Stars to a come-from-behind 25-17 over the North All-Stars in the 10th annual Under Armour Senior All-America Lacrosse Game at Towson University’s Johnny Unitas Stadium last July with standout performances.

The chemistry between the two is tough to duplicate.

“We have been playing together since we were about 11 years old,” Conrad said. “We played together in (Lutherville rec). This could be the last time we play together on the same team.

“But we have played basketball and been running together,” he added. “We workout together all the time. A trainer for USA gave us a workout program. We are pushing each other and keeping each other motivated.” 

Kelly and Conrad will be joined on the U.S. Team’s 23-player roster by longtime friend and Alex Roesner, a Loyola grad now playing for the University of Pennsylvania and recent Mount St. Joseph graduate Bryan Costabile, a midfielder headed to the University of Notre Dame.

The area players are excited to be playing Canada at 7:30 p.m. to open up the World Championships on July 7.

The U.S. has all seven titles since 1988 and beaten Canada five times in the final, including the last four.

“There is definitely some pressure on us,” Conrad said. “They have never lost a championship.”

But Canada became the first team to beat the U.S. in the 2012 tournament, and the loss came in pool play.

Canada also beat the U.S., 14-13, in overtime, in an exhibition game in January in Florida. Roesner had four goals.

“That was a letdown four years ago and we really want to bring up the level of play again and not lose anything,” Conrad said. “We really want to bring home the gold again.”   

The U.S. will also play Australia (July 9), Iroquois Nationals (July 11) and England (July 12).

The quarterfinals (July 13), semifinals (July 16) and championship game (July 18) follow.

“It would be an amazing accomplishment to come home with a gold medal,” Kelly said. “That’s what we are all really trying to do.”

Conrad is probably the most well known player. Inside Lacrosse rated him as the nation’s No. 1 prospect in the Class of 2015.

He also was The Baltimore Sun’s 2015 male Athlete of the Year and a two-time Towson Times selection as male Athlete of the Year.

 Conrad helped Loyola win the A Conference lacrosse championship in 2013 and the soccer title the following season.

His college lacrosse career got off to a solid start. He ranked seventh on Virginia in scoring with nine goals and three assists in 14 games.

Kelly also ranked seventh in scoring for North Carolina and totaled 10 goals and eights assists in 18 games.

Roesner finished fifth in scoring for Penn with 18 goals and four assists in 15 games.

Now, college lacrosse seems to be the furthest thing from the players' minds.

“It’s kind of surreal,” Roesner said of the World Championships. “It’s what you dream of as a little kid. It’s the paramount of what you can do in lacrosse.”

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