Carson Dutkanych, surrounded by parents Ted and Julie Dutkanych, signs a letter of intent as (from left to right) PCHS athletic director Jamie Sheetz, PCHS
Carson Dutkanych, surrounded by parents Ted and Julie Dutkanych, signs a letter of intent as (from left to right) PCHS athletic director Jamie Sheetz, PCHS boys lacrosse coach Andy Langendorf, 212 Lacrosse coach/founder Mike Acee and PCHS principal Bob O Connor look on. Adam Spencer/The Park Record

Surrounded by family, coaches and school officials on Wednesday afternoon at Park City High School, PCHS senior Carson Dutkanych signed a letter-of-intent to play college lacrosse at the University of Albany, State University of New York.

The attacker made history with the signing, becoming the first Park City player to sign with a Division I university. Dutkanych, a 212 Lacrosse product, said Albany felt like the right place for him to continue his career, despite the distance.

"I felt it was right for me education-wise," he said. "Education comes first, then lacrosse."

The Great Danes are no slouches on the field, though. Albany is coming off an America East championship last season, when it posted a 13-5 overall record.

"They played well last year and I like the way they play," Dutkanych said. "It's not a very technical lacrosse offense it's more like a run-and-gun. It's really quick and creativity is the biggest part."

The Parkite thinks that fits his style of play well.

"I like to play creatively and I like to do trick stuff and all that, so it fits me," he said. "That's what they're looking for."

Heading to New York once his senior year at PCHS ends will be difficult, Dutkanych anticipates, but he's ready for the challenge.

"I'm quite excited," he said. "I guarantee I'll have some cultural shock when I get out there, but I'm hopefully going to learn some new things."

But Dutkanych isn't a complete stranger to the East Coast he played lacrosse last year at Calvert Hall College High School, a college preparatory school in Towson, Md.

"It was really interesting," he said. "I got to live with a family called the Kellys and played some really good lacrosse. They were ranked number two in the nation before last year and we lost in the semifinals."

This spring, he'll finish up his high school career at home with the Miners. He's already set some lofty goals for himself and his teammates.

"I want to take state," he said. "We have the team to do it. Hopefully they put in the work in the offseason."

Then he'll turn his attention to his other lofty goals at the college level.

"I really want to start [as a freshman]," he said. "That's my main goal. And I want to be a big contributor on the team."

Dutkanych hopes he won't be the last Park City lacrosse player to sign with a Division I program. He said he thinks the local squads are going in the right direction.

"Hopefully, with the growing population of younger kids in programs like 212 Lacrosse, it'll keep growing," he said. "And hopefully we'll have more kids like me coming up."