San Clemente High’s Bennett Jonas is on his way to a big first for the Tritons. A junior this year, he’s a productive member of the varsity football team, and an elite area player when lacrosse season hits come spring. And his talents in lacrosse are taking him where no other local kid has ever gone before—playing the sport on full-ride scholarship for a Division 1 school.
On October 29, Jonas gave a verbal commitment to play lacrosse at Ohio State University under head coach Nick Myers. The Buckeyes were one of several top collegiate programs—including Denver, Syracuse, Stony Brook, Bucknell, Notre Dame, Cornell and Virginia—that had been courting Jonas for the last year.
“It really came down to Ohio State and Syracuse for me,” Jonas said. “I committed early because most lacrosse programs fill their rosters by the end of a player’s junior year, and Ohio State is where I want to be at that next level.
“I’m 100 percent with my commitment to the Buckeyes,” he said. “I don’t think anyone else will sway me from Ohio State.”
Triton lacrosse head coach Glen Miles (left) and Bennett Jonas.
Jonas, a midfielder, says he’s not being recruited to play any other sports, save for the occasional letter that taps his interest in playing football in college.
“I have no real interest in playing football at the next level,” he said. “I have every intention of signing my letter of intent to play lacrosse for Ohio State when I’m allowed to do so at the end of my junior year.”
It’s rare for lacrosse programs to look west seeking its next crop of players, as most elite schools are located in the eastern part of the country. For Jonas, this commitment is not only a huge honor, but puts California on the map as a legitimate recruiting pool.
“It’s awesome being the first player to go D1 for lacrosse from San Clemente,” he said. “It’s getting our name out there in the lacrosse world, and it’s awesome that schools are starting to recruit from the west coast. And depending on how I do, it could really open some doors for west coast players, so I’m really excited about that.”
As a sophomore playing for Triton head coach Glen Miles, Jonas totaled 30 goals missing half the season after sustaining a broken humerus.
“I think my strengths are my breakaway speed, my size—coaches love that—and my ability to make plays,” he said. “I know I need to work on my left-hand skills and getting better with the stick overall at the next level.”
He reports a 3.25 GPA and says he’ll take the PSAT for the first time on November 20.
Read more: San Clemente Times – A Triton First