Towson M Zoppo named national team captain

July 09, 2012 | WNST Staff

Robby Zoppo of Towson, Stephen Jahelka of Harvard and Zach Oliveri of UMass voted  tri-captains for team USA

TOWSON, Md. – Towson University midfielder Robby Zoppo was voted as one of the captains of the 2012 United States under-19 men’s national lacrosse team, head coach Tim Flynn revealed. Zoppo along with defenseman Stephen Jahelka of Harvard and goaltender Zach Oliveri of UMass will serve as tri-captains of the squad.

The captains were selected by a player vote at the team’s training camp at Bryant University in Rhode Island, where the 23-player group has been since Friday. The team will continue to train through Monday, when it leaves from New York for Finland, site of the FIL Under-19 World Championships.

The tournament begins July 12th in Turku, Finland, with opening ceremonies and runs until July 21 with the championship game. The U.S.’s first game is against Australia at 7 p.m. local time Friday, noon Eastern Standard Time.

Jahelka, Oliveri and Zoppo represent different areas of the field for Team USA, thus leadership will be spread around, although no attackmen were among the group voted captains.

Zoppo, a Baltimore native who played at Calvert Hall (Md.), is one of the older members of the team as a rising redshirt sophomore at Towson, where he played in 14 games during the 2012 season. For Team USA, he’s been used as a short-stick defensive midfielder and has shown an ability to play both ends of the field, using speed to his advantage.

The U.S. has won six straight gold medals since sanctioned U19 world competition began in 1988. In the most recent championship game in 2008, Team USA defeated Canada 19-12 behind 19 saves from Adam Ghitelman and three goals and two assists from then-captain Craig Dowd.