by Jeff Seidel | Special to Lacrosse Magazine Online
WHO HE IS: Drew Claytor is a fourth-year player for the La Quinta Desert Hawks, a club team in Coachella Valley, Calif. What he lacks in size (5-8, 130 pounds), the senior makes up in heart and hard work. Claytor has grown into a leader for the Desert Hawks this season, scoring 39 goals and handing out 11 assists for 50 points as of Friday. La Quinta has needed his help, as it's down to 28 players this season. Claytor hopes to attend Cal Poly San Luis Obispo or UCLA.
WHAT HE DID: Claytor had a couple of big games for La Quinta, which fought for first place in its division in the Pacific Lacrosse League (PLL) in California. He posted six goals and one assist against Torrance and did almost as well against Sangus, with five goals and an assist in that contest. In addition, Claytor posted six goals and two assists against Glendale. All three of those games were victories for the Desert Hawks (8-2).
WHY WE NOTICED: The Desert Hawks are a club team made up of students from La Quinta High School and three other nearby schools, as lacrosse is not sanctioned in California statewide. They are the only team in a 120-mile area. Their closest road game is 130 miles; the farthest is about 220 miles. Claytor was one of the top scorers last year and has become La Quinta's main offensive threat this season at attack.
WHAT HE SAID: "I was really proud of my teammates and how they stepped up and how they've played. There was a lot of stuff going on last year, but we pulled together. But I was really proud of how some of our younger guys stepped up and took starting positions this year. We just had a tremendous effort from the younger guys having to fill the shoes. We've always done very well, and we were able to keep playing well. I love my attack line, and when we get chances, we mostly capitalize on them."
WHAT'S NEXT: La Quinta plays Long Beach wrapped up first place in its division with 15-5 and 18-10 home victories Saturday and Sudnday over Long Beach and El Segundo, respectively. The Pacific Lacrosse League playoffs start Saturday.
LMO's new "Big Shots" series recognizes the feats on and off the field of high school players nationwide. Check back each week for new standouts. Got a candidate in mind? Fill out the brief form below.