Lacrosse players in the West Kootenay are preparing to face off on a new season. Photo: Jennifer Small

Experienced coaches seek new lacrosse players for 2019 season in Castlegar

West Kootenay athletes 18-21 invited to attend upcoming practice sessions

West Kootenay lacrosse players will be bringing a ton of coaching experience with them this year as they enter the Alberta Junior B Tier III Rocky Mountain Lacrosse League.

The Timberwolves are pleased to announce the return of the 2018 coaching staff, with head coach Peter Youngblut sharing the bench with assistant coaches Kevin Floyd and Rob Van Beek, and goaltending coach Tyler Landry.

“We are excited about growing as a team and defending our championship title,” says assistant coach Kevin Floyd.

This experienced coaching team has a combined 40 years of playing experience at the junior, senior and pro levels, in Canada and the US.

West Kootenay Timberwolves is a not-for-profit club delivering an organized junior box lacrosse program in the West Kootenay since 2018. Its season season runs from March to about mid-July.

Recruitment of players is now underway. Players must be from the West Kootenay, and be between the ages of 17 and 21 as of December of the playing year.

Returning Timberwolves players will be joined by graduates from the local minor lacrosse program.

Athletes new to the game who bring skills from other sports are invited to try out. Prospects can practice with the team until mid-April. Practices are at Rossland Arena on Tuesdays (7:30 p.m.) and Thursdays (8 p.m.), with Thursdays moving to the Castlegar Complex on April 18.

The Timberwolves are committed to growing local talent.

“I am encouraged by the interest in the team. Prospects are invited to drop by practice, to watch or to try it hands-on,” says Suzanne Bélanger, president of the Timberwolves Lacrosse Society. “There is no obligation to join the team right away, although our roster is filling.”

Home games begin in May, and include:

• Saturday, May 11 vs. Medicine Hat Sun Devils (Castlegar Complex, 2 p.m.)

• Saturday, May 11, Sun Devils vs. Sylvan Lake Yetti (Castlegar Complex, 8:30 p.m.)

• Sunday, May 12 vs. Yetti (Castlegar Complex, 11 a.m.)

Box lacrosse is played mainly during the summer months in standard sized hockey arenas, on a cement or turf surface. The game is very similar to hockey and is played with a goaltender and five players aside on the floor at one time. Play can continue freely in all zones of the floor; no offside rules are present. Body contact is permitted on the ball carrier, with limited contact off the ball carrier.

The strategy of lacrosse is like that of basketball, with all five runners involved in the offense and the defense. Added to the appeal are the speed and excitement created by a 30-second shot clock. The combination of action and reaction makes box lacrosse as much fun to play as it is to watch.

There are currently over 47,000 box players in Canada. Both males and females play this version of lacrosse and the ages of competition range from six to 65 years. Lacrosse is known as the “fastest game on two feet.”

Interested players can contact the club at wkjrlax@gmail.com, on Facebook, or on Instagram (wkjrlax).

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