Athletics buzzed in OT
Many of Carter Accursi’s earliest memories inevitably revolve around lacrosse.
The 18-year-old son of National Lacrosse League Hall-of-Famer Mike Accursi remembers playing backyard lacrosse and throwing a ball against the wall at a nearby school when he wasn’t watching his father play.
“Lacrosse was always happening in our house,” Carter Accursi said. “Even from when I was really young, lacrosse was always a huge thing in my life, being in the arenas for his games or just having him come to my games and when he used to coach junior A.
“It was always lacrosse.”
It’s no surprise the younger Accursi grew up loving the game and is now carving out a career for himself, following in his father’s footsteps as a member of the St. Catharines Athletics.
“It was such a surreal feeling at the beginning,” Carter Accursi said. “I was watching these guys play junior when I was younger and now I’m in this league. It’s a wild feeling.”
Mike Accursi played two seasons for the A’s in 1995 and 1996.
“A lot of guys from in the NLL came out of St. Catharines,” Carter Accursi said. “It’s one of those teams which is very old and if you’re in the lacrosse community, you know who the A’s are. There’s a lot of history behind the team and being part of that history, it’s crazy.”
Mike Accursi coached Carter three years ago at the U15 level when the A’s won an Ontario title.
“His lacrosse knowledge . . . he’s one of the best. After the game he’d always be able to help me out and tell me what to do and then watching him play and watching him do it, you learn just off of that,” Carter Accursi said. “When I was a bit younger it was hard because I still saw him as dad but as I got older I saw him as Mike the coach, not my dad.”
Carter Accursi attended Holy Cross, where his father is a teacher, until moving to The Kiski School, an independent, all-male college-preparatory boarding school in Saltsburg, Penn.
He joined the A’s this season after his obligations at Kiski were complete.
“I’m a young guy coming in so I’m not looking to be a crazy goal scorer,” Carter Accursi said. “I’m just trying to be a role player because they have guys that can score. If I’m setting them up and getting picks, the rougher spots, I’m completely good with that.”
A’s coach Steve Toll played with Mike Accursi in both Toronto and Rochester at the National Lacrosse League level.
“He (Carter) reminds me of Mike in so many different ways. Just his look and his stature and we always bug him about being so hairy and the facial expressions, too,” Toll smiled.
Toll said it is easy to pick up on the pedigree.
“When you get a kid with the background Mike has and the awards he has won, he’s (Carter) going to have it,” Toll said. “He came in late and that’s very hard because the boys haven’t played box in three years. It’s a different thing.”
Carter Accursi has acquitted himself well for rookie with five goals and nine points in 11 games.
“Early on he was trying to force things a little too much,” Toll said. “His last three or four games have been his best by a country mile. He’s starting to look more relaxed and starting to do things we want him to do.
“We only dress eight O guys so he’s got to chip in with a goal a game and make a couple of good plays and do the little things we need him to do. He’ll definitely be a scorer in this league. He has three more years so there’s a lot of time and space and a lot of building.”
The Athletics dropped a heart-breaking 10-9 overtime decision to the Oakville Buzz in Ontario Junior Lacrosse League action Wednesday night at Canada Games Park.
The game was tied 8-8 heading into the third period and 9-9 after regulation.
St. Catharines dropped to 9-8 while the Buzz improved to 12-5.
A’s acorns: The A’s were without leading scorers Tye Steenhuis (injured) and Jackson Webster (COVID) . . . Austin Paddy turned back 41 shots in goal for the A’s.
Buzz 10 Athletics 9 OT
WMKL Player of the Game: St. Catharines’ Gavin Howard with two goals and two assists.
St. Catharines Athletics: Gavin Howard 2; Xavier Taylor 2; Adam Ross 2; Julian Race, Keaton Zavitz, Gaviin Snow.
Oakville Buzz: Will Sheehan 3; Edward Qu 2; Hugh Kelleher, Eric McDonald, Curtis Goddard, Brian Jackman, Jack Follows.
Up next: The A’s are at Mimico Thursday and home to Orangeville Wednesday, July 6.
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