Penn-Bound Schain Named Mid-Atlantic Boys’ Player of the Year

Penn-bound Robert Schain put up 121 points (62 goals, 59 assists), leading Bullis (Md.) to its second straight IAC title and season-ending wins over powerhouses Hill Academy (Ontario) and Salisbury School (Conn.). (John Strohsacker)

Bullis (Md.) senior attackman Robert Schain has played lacrosse most of his life, but he never viewed himself as a tremendous athlete nor envisioned excelling much at the sport.

Lacrosse was in his blood, though, so he kept with it. His cousin, Louis Dubick, plays at Maryland, and his grandfather played at Syracuse.

Schain grew to love the game and eventually poured all of his attention into it. Not surprisingly, his excellent hand-eye coordination and positive outlook led him to a pretty impressive high school career.

This past season, Schain posted 62 goals and 59 assists to help guide Bullis to its second straight IAC tournament title, and he was rewarded for all his efforts. He was named the team’s offensive MVP for the second year in a row, a Washington Post All-Metro first-team selection and an Under Armour All-American.

Now, he can add Warrior/US Lacrosse Mid-Atlantic Boys’ Player of the Year to his list of accolades.

“He is an unbelievable competitor,” Bullis coach Jeff Bellistri said. “He’s not the quickest guy. He’s not the biggest guy. He’s not the strongest guy. But he outworks every matchup, every ground ball. Everything he does, he plays at the highest level.”


Schain will play at the highest level next spring, following in the footsteps of his cousin and grandfather when he suits up for Ivy League powerhouse Penn. It’s an achievement he only began to think about in middle school, when he decided to get serious about lacrosse.

His club coach at the time, Matt Lovejoy, was a close family friend and needed a place to live after finishing off a collegiate career Virginia, so Schain’s family invited him to stay with them in Bethesda.

Watching Lovejoy train and hearing him talk about college lacrosse provided a spark in Schain, and he was motivated from then on. He stopped playing other sports to focus on lacrosse, and the added attention paid off drastically.

“He has been a great role model and a great leader. He has come so far from when he was an eighth-grader,” Bellistri said. “When he was an eighth-grader, he didn't have all those attributes. But over those [last few years] just watching his growth, I don’t think I have seen anyone go from where he was in eighth grade to 12th grade and improve so much overall and as a person.”

Schain’s high school progression followed the same trajectory as how Bullis’ season played out. The Bulldogs began the year with a couple of tough non-conference losses, but they were able to take care of business and win the DC-IAC championship over Landon (Md.) and then defeated two top-ranked programs in a two-day span when they took down Hill Academy (Ont.) and Salisbury School (Conn.) in the GEICO High School Lacrosse Nationals in late May.

Schain was a big part of that improvement, and he finishes second all-time in school history for career points.

“It was such a special team and a tight-knit group. I was one of three team captains, and it was such an easy group to lead,” Schain said. “Everyone just wanted to win, and everyone was a team player and knew their role. I loved playing for the coaches. Coach Bellistri is such a players’ coach and such a good guy. He is competitive, but doesn’t get angry and knows what’s best for the players and knows how to motivate. And the assistant coaches brought such great knowledge to the game and made it easy for us to click.”



School: Bullis (Md.)
Year: Senior
Position: Attackman
Stats: 62 goals, 59 assists, 50 ground balls
Coach Jeff Bellistri: “He is an unbelievable competitor. He’s not the quickest guy. He’s not the biggest guy. He’s not the strongest guy. But he outworks every matchup, every ground ball. Everything he does, he plays at the highest level.”


Schain was consistent throughout the season, but always seemed to step up in big moments.

In the semifinals of the IAC tournament, Schain scored the game-winner in overtime to send the Bulldogs to the championship. In the GEICO Nationals title game against Hill, he had four goals and five assists.

“We did end the season on some great wins,” Bellistri said. “We really focus on winning the IAC tournament. Robert made some big plays. … He is always there.”

“He shares the ball; he is not a one-trick pony. He can do so many different things. He rides, goes on the wings for faceoffs, whatever we needed from him,” Bellistri added. “And he is such a nice kid. That’s the part I really like. He has worked with the younger kids and has made our younger kids better and has brought the whole team together.”

Schain is as smart and successful off the field as he is on it. For an entrepreneurship capstone class, he started a company, called We Track, with four other classmates. It allows students to find community service events and validate their hours through an app. The project won the school’s “Shark Tank” competition and a $10,000 prize for the startup company.

Bellistri said Schain has worked for everything he’s earned.

“Nothing has been given to him,” Bellistri said. “He has worked through the entire season. He scored the most points in a single season by a Bullis lacrosse player, so every single game, he didn't take time off. He always played hard. To be recognized as an All-American, that’s the highest award you can get, and I’m happy for Robert.”

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