Frank C. Prezioso ‘81
Lacrosse - Hall of Fame Class of 2000
Harvard Athletic Achievements
Prezioso was a defensive standout for the Crimson lacrosse team. He was a 1981 first team All-Ivy selection and also an All-American. Along with fellow defender (and 2000 Hall of Fame Inductee) Haywood Miller ’81 and goalie John Lechner, Prezioso helped lead a notoriously stingy Harvard defense that was tied with Cornell for fewest goals allowed in the Ivy League in 1980. That same year the Crimson shared the Ivy League Championship with the Big Red.
Remembering Harvard Athletics
My name in the Hall of Fame is still an overwhelming thought to me, especially as a freshman in fall ball I was just hoping to make the team! It is also exciting to be inducted with my classmate, Haywood Miller. Less two or three, Haywood and I started every varsity game from 1978-1981, side by side, on the defensive end. We bruised many an attackman’s body and ego over that span, including our own teammates in practice. It was my pleasure to play alongside such a dominating defenseman.
Many people have supported and encouraged my lacrosse career, and I would like to express my gratitude to all of them.
Bob Scalise, my head coach, had already begun rejuvenating the lacrosse program when I arrived. He was a supreme teacher/coach whose development of talent on the practice field empowered our team’s success in games. Scotty “The Big A” Anderson, and Tombstone Ted Marchall arrived as assistants my freshman year with a winning attitude and defensive experience. A special thanks to all three of them for their leadership, and their friendship. From being Bob’s “secretary,” to watching the Rolling Stones on Saturday Night Live at Scott’s place, and experiencing Ted’s favorite Mexican restaurant, I was fortunate to enjoy much more than just a coach-player relationship.
I was also lucky to be part of the emergence of Harvard lacrosse into a nationally respected program. The new coaching staff attracted good players, who more importantly, were great people. We played hard, studied hard, and partied hard, whether we were inhaling dust in the old Briggs Cage in preseason practice, or running the streets in full gear to Boston University’s astroturf field in windy subfreezing temperatures, or playing box lacrosse games on the outdoor tennis courts, we labored and laughed, deepening our friendships. When we were defeated, we suffered together. When we beat Penn in 1978 (let the wild bus ride home tradition begin-Allocate), Brown in OT in 1979, Cornell and UMass in 1980, and Adolph in 1981, we reveled together. That magical 1980 season brought us an Ivy League Championship and an NCAA playoff berth. My only regret is that Marty, Leo, Melon, Usr, Fought, Egoist, and other members of the 1978-79 teams couldn’t share the moment with us.
It was a special and successful four years for me at Harvard because of my wonderful teammates. We cared for each other, and the bonds we formed will never be broken. To Ex, Barney, Dirt, Silken, Popeye, Leech, Norm, and company… Thanks.
“You’re never gonna make any money plain’ that dumb game,” said my Dad, always half jokingly, on numerous occasions. But deep down he knew, as did my Mom and sister Donna, that lacrosse was my passion. They supported and understood how important “that dumb game” was to me, and I thank them. Win or lose, my family shared the experience and loved me. That secure love energized me and helped me achieve in lacrosse and in life. Thank you and I love you. (PS – My Dad was right, -- I didn’t make a penny on that dumb game!)
THE BEST FRIEND
Seventh grade was a big year for me. I began playing lacrosse and also fell in love with a cute blonde in my math class. Marybeth is my best friend and soulmate, and we’ve been married for nineteen years with two children, MaryGabrielle and Betsy. Mare was involved in my Harvard years, celebrating victories and wiping tears after losses. I would not be the person I am today without Marybeth by my side all these years. I love you eternally.
And thank you God, not for awards or recognition, but for Harvard and lacrosse, for the people who shared both with me, and for all the memories deep in my heart.