Pilgrim captain Rocheleau to play at next level
By ALEX SPONSELLER
Pilgrim senior lacrosse captain MJ Rocheleau will go down as one of the pioneers of Patriots lacrosse.
Pilgrim introduced lacrosse at the varsity level just five years ago and got off to a shaky start in the early going. However, Rocheleau quickly emerged as one of the top players and leaders for the Patriots, and helped guide them to a state championship appearance in just their fourth year.
Rocheleau recently signed his National Letter of Intent to play Division III lacrosse at New England College in Henniker, New Hampshire next spring, going from Pilgrim High School to being an NEC Pilgrim.
“Officially signing for me was a relief. The whole process of getting to that point was a journey that I won’t forget. Having the team there behind me signing it was a memory that I won’t forget,” said Rocheleau of finally committing on paper.
Rocheleau’s decision to choose New England College was an easy one, as he enjoyed his time meeting the team and getting acquainted with the campus during an overnight visit.
“I did an overnight stay and I got to meet the entire team, the coaches, saw a game, practice. The one thing that stands out is that I love the area that’s up there, the team is a young team so I’m going to be with those guys for three or four years of my life. It’s really well-run and I feel like I blend well with the guys up there,” said Rocheleau.
Although Rocheleau missed out on winning a state championship, he is satisfied with his high school career and is proud to be one of the focal points in Pilgrim lacrosse’s early life.
“I’ve accomplished everything that I wanted (in high school). I was disappointed not to get a state championship ring last year but what are you going to do? I felt like I did help bring up the program at Pilgrim and helped get it more recognition. It was a tremendous feeling,” said Rocheleau.
He is also going to miss playing in front of the fans and faculty at Pilgrim High.
“The thing that I am going to miss the most is the support from all the guys that I played with,” said Rocheleau. “There’s been tremendous support from the school, all the teachers, all the students, all the faculty, it’s amazing to me that we were a five-year program and we made it to the championship last year. We had the entire school in the stands behind us.”
Rocheleau looks forward to playing at the collegiate level as a Pilgrim and plans on working hard and doing whatever he needs to do to win.
“I’m very excited to go play at college, it’s always been a dream of mine,” said Rocheleau. “It’s a new experience for me that I’m excited to try. (I’ll) have to work my ass off and continue to push myself like I’ve done all four years of high school … just be coachable and get the job done out on the field.”