The Comox Valley Wild Midget B lacrosse team was in Richmond on the May long weekend taking part in the fifth annual Midget Spring Tournament and brought home a gold medal.
The team finished with a 5-1 record, outscoring their opponents 61-31, and more importantly came together as a team. “We really wanted to stress team defence this weekend and reinforce some of the structure we have been working on in practice,” said head coach Peter Parke. “I thought we got better in all facets of the game as the weekend progressed and got the result we wanted.”
In the first game, the Wild faced a team from Delta that had recently moved down from the A2 division on the Lower Mainland. The game was a hotly contested affair with teams trading goal for goal. At the end of the first period, the score was tied 4-4, and at the end of the second, it was 8-8. In the end, penalty troubles caught up with the Wild and they fell 11-9.
Later that afternoon, the Wild righted the ship and dominated the Semiahmoo Rock 14-4 with Ryan Beauchamp and Matt Edgar leading the way with hat tricks. Tanner Horvath added two goals. “It was great to see the kids respond in this fashion,” said assistant coach Warren Dickie. “We had heard that this team had beaten the Delta team that we lost to, so it was great to see such a strong effort.”
The Wild built on that victory and with strong efforts from Marshall Pay, Luke Hutchings, Riley Kampen and Zack Kozier defeated Westshore 13-6. The game was a penalty-filled affair that saw a Westshore player ejected for spearing in the opening minutes. Levi Hoffman led the Wild with a hat trick and River Olsen played his best game of the season.
In the final game of pool play, the Wild faced another team from Delta and defeated them 8-3. Brandon Playford found his scoring touch and led the Wild with four points and was a threat every time he was on the floor. Keenan Toal also scored his first goal of the tournament on a nice feed from Geoffrey Preiss.
The Wild finished in second place in their eight-team pool and qualified for semifinal play against Port Moody. Logan Bood and Jake Nottlebrock had strong games for the Wild, and Andre Sutter led the team in scoring with a hat trick. Kolby Antonelli had a stellar game in goal and made a number of great saves in an 8-1 victory.
In the final, the Wild faced the only team to beat them – the Islanders from Delta – in what would prove to be another great game. “While we would like to say that a lot of our success can be attributed to the stellar door openers we had on the bench, we know that in big games our best players have to step up and be our best players,” said coach Parke.
“Marshall, Luke, Levi, Matt, Ryan, Kolby, and Brandon did just that and they were a big reason we had the success we had in this tournament.” Both teams played a similar game to their first meeting and shared tied scores after the first and second periods. But this time, the Wild pulled away in the third period with three straight goals to win 8-6.
BOXLA BITS The Wild thank the parents and sponsors for their support in this tournament and in particular their manager Lisa Edgar for all her work organizing the travel, hotels, clothing, and other duties that happen behind the scenes of any successful team … the Midget Wild are in action this Saturday at 3 p.m. at SC1 taking on the Cowichan Thunder … come watch some exciting lacrosse action and support our local athletes … first 500 fans get in free …
– Comox Valley Wild