Sports Person of the Week
Wrynn’s Commitment Generates Success
Senior captain James Wrynn used his goal-scoring skills to carve out a great career as a member of the Guilford boys’ lacrosse squad. (Photo courtesy of James Wrynn )
James Wrynn is everything a coach could want in a lacrosse player—he’s fast, strong, and has a knack for scoring. A senior captain on the Guilford boys’ lacrosse team, James was ready for the 2020 campaign and excited about what the Indians could achieve this year, though the season was canceled before it started due to COVID-19.
James first picked up a lacrosse stick when he was five and never wanted to put it down. James’s father and uncle both grew up playing lacrosse at Hand, and his dad was a big influence with getting him involved in the sport.
Last year, James made crucial contributions to an Indians’ club that finished with a record of 16-5 on its way to making the final of the SCC Tournament and the semifinals of the Class M State Tournament. James, an attacker, scored 37 goals to go with 14 assists on the campaign.
“Last season was a huge success for us, and my favorite moment was just playing with the team and being as successful as we were,” says James. “Beating Hand was a special moment, as well as playing in the SCC championship game.”
Head Coach Brian White has high praise for James, calling him one of the most dedicated players on Guilford’s roster. White appreciates how hard James worked throughout his high school career and knows that he is going to do the same when he competes at the collegiate level.
“James was a two-year starter, exceptionally hardworking and dedicated. It would be difficult to think of anyone that could exceed the dedication James had to his teammates and to the Guilford lacrosse program,” White says. “James will become an exceptional college player at Western New England in the coming years, and I look forward to going to games and watching him excel.”
Like many other Indians’ players, James views Coach White as a father figure and someone he can always count on when he needs help. The running theme in Guilford’s locker room is that the players on the team call White “dad.”
“He really cares about winning and about the program and, when you see that intensity, it makes you want to be better,” James says. “He really pushes us at practice to the best the we can be and that we should practice like we would play. I’ve also grown a lot playing for him lacrosse-wise and as a person, because he teaches us life lessons through lacrosse.”
During the recent offseason, James put in a great deal of work alongside his teammates in an effort to raise their games. James and company frequently hit the gym to lift weights and were also out there on the field to get some extra reps.
“We spent a lot of time as unit together doing team lifts this offseason. I go to the turf to shoot, as well as wall ball, and working out on my own time at Mangino’s [a strength and conditioning facility in Guilford],” says James. “Lacrosse is my only sport. I play it year-round, so it gives me a lot of time to focus on my game.”
There are a bevy of intricacies that go into the sport of lacrosse. James likes to study all the different facets of the game, be it on the offensive or defensive side of the field.
“My favorite aspect of the sport is the team part and how the whole team needs to work together, from the defense to the goalie to face-offs and to the offense. Everyone has to play their role to be successful,” James says. “Also, the fact that you have your teammates to pick you up if you’re playing bad or to help you play better. The speed and physicality is also a great part. It’s a very up-and-down game, and the ball is moving constantly, so it requires a lot of concentration on doing your job.”
In addition to competing for the Indians, James has lent a hand to Guilford Youth Lacrosse and helped out in the Unified Sports program at the high school. Outside of lacrosse, James enjoys watching all kinds of sports both in person and on TV and also fishes in his free time. An honor roll student at Guilford, James is looking forward to attending Western New England University, where he will study sports management and play lacrosse.
“I enjoyed helping out coaching Guilford Youth Lacrosse, as well as helping with Unified Sports during school,” says James. “I’m excited to be attending Western next year, but I wish we could have had our final stand as seniors.”