Local lacrosse fans will be able to watch some familiar names this winter when the newly-minted West division of the Arena Lacrosse League takes to the floor at the Langley Events Centre (LEC) in December.
Goalie Matteo Tack, who was acquired by the Coquitlam Jr. Adanacs for the team’s 2019 playoff run for a Minto Cup, was selected first overall by the Sea Spray, one of the four teams that will be based at the LEC for the winter league’s season.
“It is obviously pretty neat to go No. 1,” said the 20-year-old Burnaby native whose playing rights returned to the Burnaby Lakers for the 2020 season that wasn’t played and the truncated 2021 schedule. “I am just more excited to get going and for the team to have success.”
Other recognizable names on the Sea Spray roster include: John and Robert Hofseth, of the Coquitlam Adanacs along with Conner Stroup and Carter Dickson as well as former Jr. Adanacs’ goalie Nate Faccin.
Another Adanacs’ goalie, Andrew Gallent, landed with the Black Fish, along with former Jr. Adanacs’ star Ethan Ticehurst.
Thomas Semple, the Adanacs’ first pick in the first round of the 2021 Western Lacrosse Association draft, will suit up for the Shooting Eagles while the team’s top territorial selection in the same draft, Jalen Chaster, will pull on a Grizzlies’ jersey along with Clark Walter of the Port Coquitlam Saints junior team.
The four Langley-based teams append the seven teams that comprise the ALL’s East division. The league was founded in 2017 and is a minor league of the professional National Lacrosse League.
Players to be drafted were evaluated by coaches at a recent three-day combine. Each pays a fee and must be released from an NLL team, or on its practice roster, to be able to play in the league.
Teams are scheduled to play a 12-game season beginning Dec. 11 through to the end of March. A champion will be determined March 27.
Their nicknames were chosen with the help of Tewanee Joseph of the Squamish First Nation and the logos were designed by First Nations artist Yul Baker. Both are also assistant coaches In the league.