A member of the 2010 class, Ryan Izzo is one of the few Walpole alumni athletes who have gone on to play professional sports. Izzo is a short-stick midfielder for the Ohio Machine, who drafted him 27th overall in the 2015 Major League Lacrosse draft. Before entering the MLL, Izzo played lacrosse as a Minuteman at the University of Massachusetts.
Describing the differences throughout all three levels of athletics (high school, college, and professional), Izzo said, “The main difference I have noticed is the talent pool around you from level to level. Each [player is] trying to be the best, thus creating top tier [athletes].”
At Walpole High, Izzo played three years of varsity football, four years of varsity basketball and four years of varsity lacrosse. During his senior lacrosse season, Izzo notched 38 goals and 16 assists. Throughout his whole high school career, he had 131 goals and 49 assists. Inside Lacrosse named him the 35th best high school midfielder in 2010.
In football, Izzo holds the Commonwealth of Massachusetts scholastic football scoring and touchdowns records with 722 career points and 101 touchdowns. With all his success at Walpole High, Izzo said, “[My experience] allowed me to gain many attributes such as great leadership, work ethic and having trust in yourself and those around you to do their job. These are key components in not just being a successful athlete, but a successful person as well.”
Izzo had one piece of advice to give to any athlete hoping to continue up into professional athletics: “Never be satisfied. The most successful athletes are the ones who always want more.”