Pa. Boys | Jack Forster, La Salle

Posted: June 27, 2007

If you're looking to gain a deeper understanding of why Jack Forster is such a gifted athlete, don't go to Jack Forster.

For one, the La Salle football and lacrosse star isn't what you'd call verbose.

"He's just a quiet kid," said Bill Leahy, the Explorers' lacrosse coach.

And two, it's hard to describe why you're exceptional at something when the reason is likely because you're the type who isn't exceptional at describing yourself.

"It took me a year to figure it out," said football coach Drew Gordon. "For a guy who . . . doesn't say much and is the laid-back type, Jack wants to win like no other."

And win he did. Forster's teams won both Catholic League titles during his senior year (two of seven for La Salle). And the 6-foot, 180-pounder was literally a jack-of-all-trades for both championship squads.

Perhaps the most valuable commodity to his team in football and one of the best lacrosse players in the area - if not the country - Forster is The Inquirer's Southeastern Pennsylvania senior boys' athlete of the year for 2006-07.

As an undersized wide receiver, Forster caught 75 passes for 980 yards and 12 touchdowns. As a not-particularly fast safety, he had two interceptions. And as the consummate team player, he also returned kicks and punts and handled punting duties.

And for good measure, when quarterback John Harrison was injured against Monsignor Bonner, Forster calmly jumped in and guided the Explorers to a victory.

But it's in lacrosse that Forster will probably some day play professionally. As a midfielder, he was instrumental as the nationally ranked Explorers won their fourth straight league crown. Over the last two seasons, the Penn State-bound Forster tallied a total of 50 goals and 46 assists.

"He wants to play attack in college," said Leahy. "But I think he's a better middie because he can do it at both ends."

Forster, naturally, can't explain all his success. But when he hits the field, he admits his demeanor changes. And it's not a Jekyll-and-Hyde thing, perhaps more Penn and Teller.

"I'm one of the more vocal guys out there," said Forster. "If I have to be."

Contact staff writer Jeff McLane at 215-854-4745


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