Our first installment of the Shore Sports Network Boys Lacrosse Players of the Week will honor the top overall performer for the first three weeks of the season as well as players of the week in each division. This feature will be back every Tuesday with another look at who had a big week in Shore Conference lacrosse.




Erik Rant, Sr., Midfield, Ocean

The Spartans are off to a 7-0 start, and one of the main reasons is the explosive scoring of Rant. The senior middie has a conference-leading 35 goals and 16 assists for 51 points through seven games. He is also third on the team with 31 ground balls. He has scored at least four goals in every game this season, including a season-high six in wins over Middletown North, Holmdel and Ranney.




Drew Bukowiec, Jr., Attack, Howell

Bukowiec has 20 goals and 13 assists in eight games, helping the Rebels to a 5-3 record and five wins in their lat six games. He had a season-high six goals and eight points when Howell handed Toms River North its first loss with an 11-5 victory.



Billy Porter, Sr., Attack/Midfield, Brick Memorial

Brick Memorial senior Billy Porter scored a game-high three goals in the Mustangs' 8-5 win over Jackson Memorial. (Photo by Robert Badders).

The Mustangs are off to their best start in program history and are averaging 14 goals per game. Porter is their leading scoring through seven games with 24 goals and 11 assists while also picking up 23 ground balls. He scored a season-high six goals in a win over St. Rose and had a season-best eight points against Toms River East.


CLASS B NORTH (Besides Rant)

Cole Smolokoff, Sr., Attack, Red Bank

Photo by Mark Brown/B51 Photography.

Smolokoff has 24 goals and four assists through eight games, and it was his huge performance against Red Bank Catholic that gets him the nod here. The senior scored eight of the Bucs' 14 goals in a 14-7 win over the Caseys to even their record at 4-4. Red Bank is 4-1 since an 0-3 start.



Jarrett Birch, Jr., Attack, Manasquan

Manasquan junior attackman Jarrett Birch. (Photo by Ray Richardson).

The Warriors are 7-1 with wins over four teams that are either currently ranked in the SSN Top 10 or were at the time, and their only loss is to the New Jersey's No. 5 team, Moorestown. Birch has a team-high 40 points on 26 goals and 14 assists for a young and talented Manasquan team that will be in the hunt for multiple championships this season.


Lacrosse editor Bob Badders can be reached at badders@allshoremedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @Bob_Badders. Like Shore Sports Network on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube channel for all the latest video highlights.