Many athletes aspire to go pro after college, or even straight out of high school.
Sean Grogan, a junior at West Genesee High School, is doing one better: with his newly minted Irish citizenship, he will play defense for the Irish National Team this August in the European Lacrosse Championships in Finland. He is only 17 years old.
The European Lacrosse Championships take place from August 6 to 16. When the Irish National Team last competed in the championships in 2004, they placed seventh out of 12 teams with a 6-1 record, according to Richard Moran, coach and USA president.
Patti Grogan, Sean's mother, said the first time the family saw the team play was when they went to the 2006 World Championships in Canada, "Kind of on a whim. We just packed up and went," she said. The family got to see Ireland play, as well as the championship game that year.
It was after that event that Sean became interested in playing internationally. When the family attended John Pepper Memorial Lacrosse day about three years ago in Camillus, Moran remembers Sean coming up to the booth and asking questions about how to join the Irish team. At the time, he was looking to join the under 19 team.
Finally, when the team held its American tryouts on March 16 in Long Island, Sean was able to take a shot.
Originally, Sean said he had not intended to try out for the national team "The whole plan was that I was going to try out for the under 19 team," he said. However, Ireland did not have that team available this year. "I still decided to try and it worked out," Sean said.
Moran was also present at the tryouts. "It was very evident that he was a very good player," Moran said. "He played very well and was originally picked as an alternate," but when another member announced he was moving out of the area, Sean was put on the roster.