Shooting from the Hip with John Haldy
Senior captain John Haldy is entering his final NCAA Tournament while at UVa. The Bryn Mawr, Pa., native recently sat down with VirginiaSports.com to discuss the family atmosphere in the UVa lacrosse program, plans for after graduation and who would play him in a movie.
Question: As a fourth-year, how do you envision your relationships with your teammates after you finish out your career?
Haldy: It’s kind of like a big family being on this team. These are lifelong friendships that I’ve had. It was pretty cool the other week when we had Tilman Johnson and Drew McKnight come to practice who were former UVa grads. They just kept telling us about how we’re forming life-long friendships here. It was great to hear older guys say stuff like that.
Question: What do you plan on doing after graduation?
Haldy: I plan on moving to New York. Both of my sisters live there and it would be a nice transition from Philadelphia to New York. I’m hopefully trying to get into some type of finance. I’m not too sure yet, though. I have been focusing more on lacrosse, so I’ll get to that by the time I graduate.
Question: You are from Pennsylvania. What made you choose to come to Virginia?
Haldy: My assistant coach in high school was Doug Knight, who was a former player here. He kept telling me since I was in eighth grade that UVa was such a great place and stuff like that. My brother actually [played at] Duke so I had two competing views there, but Doug Knight’s view won out. I decided to come here. [My brother] wasn’t too happy, but he was also very supportive with wherever I went. He has enjoyed coming to games here. He has been more of a mentor-type guy to me just because he is so much older.
Question: So your brother played at Duke. Is lacrosse a family sport?
Haldy: One of my sisters started out at Penn and stopped playing after her first year and my other sister played all four years at Washington & Lee. Neither of my parents played, so it’s interesting that we all decided to play.
Question: You played basketball in high school; did you think about playing college hoops?
Haldy: I definitely did. It was kind of a hard decision deciding which sport to play, but I still love basketball. Basketball is the first sport I started playing and I still watch any NBA game.
Question: So which NBA team do you pull for?
Haldy: The Sixers are my favorite team. It has been tough so far [in the NBA playoffs] because the Heat are pretty good and they gave the Sixers a bunch of trouble, but I am a supporter of them and they’re improving.
Question: Rumor has it that you played against Virginia basketball player Sammy Zeglinski in high school.
Haldy: We were in the same league; he went to Penn Charter, I went to Haverford. The biggest thing from that is that we beat him twice my senior year. We didn’t have too much success against their team before that, but I went out on top.
Question: What is it like having Zeglinski choose Virginia as well?
Haldy: It wasn’t too much of a rivalry so I was actually pretty happy when I got down to school here and knew that he was coming. We have formed a friendship over our four years here. He is a great guy.
Question: What is your favorite Coach Starsia quote?
Haldy: ‘Be cool to the pizza dude’ is probably my favorite one. That just means be courteous and nice to anyone. It could be a high-up guy or the pizza guy. You just have to be nice to everyone.
Question: Do you have a pregame ritual or superstition?
Haldy: Not too much. I don’t like to listen to too much music. I just like to relax. Before games I definitely like to close my eyes and picture myself making plays all over the field.
Question: Who is the biggest clown on your team?
Haldy: I would say it’s a tie between Todd Faiella and Chris Bocklet. Todd is always good for a good one-liner joke and Chris is always good for a little prank here and there.
Question: If there was a movie made about your life, who would play you?
Haldy: [laughing] I know [Matt] Lovejoy did Brad Pitt from Troy, so he got a decent amount of [harassment] for that, so I’m going to steer clear of that. I’ll just say Denzel Washington. He’s my favorite actor, so I will say him in any movie.