The Western Lacrosse Association is planning for a 2021 season.
And the first step toward that goal will be the league’s annual draft of graduating junior players that is set for Feb. 7.
Like most things in this time of a global pandemic, the draft will be conducted virtually with all the teams linked over video.
As the 2020 season was cancelled, teams will pick in the reverse order of their placement in the final standings of the 2019 campaign.
That means the Coquitlam Adanacs, which finished last, pick first overall and at the start of each of the subsequent seven rounds; the team also has the third selection in the fourth round.
Preceding the draft, the Adanacs will also have the first opportunity to protect a graduating player that’s lived in Coquitlam for at least the past three years. Last year, the team used that opportunity to safeguard defender Reid Bowering, who played five seasons with the Coquitlam Jr. Adanacs.
The WLA draft will be streamed live on the league’s website (wlalacrosse.com) beginning at 7 p.m.
Meanwhile, Bowering’s junior alma mater made a series of moves to accumulate a total of four selections in the first round of the recent BC Junior A Lacrosse League draft.
The defending 2019 champions selected Jaxon Smart, of Maple Ridge, second overall followed by Jack Kask and then Ben Coghill, who was picked fifth overall.
Smart had been projected as the league’s top pick. But instead, the Langley Thunder chose Cody Malawsky, the son of Coquitlam’s Curt Malawsky, a Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Famer who coached the Jr. Adanacs to the Minto Cup national championship in 2010 after a 12-year career in the National Lacrosse League.
Kask and Coghill both played in the Ridge Meadows Minor Lacrosse Association.
The Adanacs then rounded out their first round by selecting Logan Mellish from North Shore Minor Lacrosse.
If and when the newcomers are able to pull on the pads for a 2021 season, they’ll be playing for a new head coach as Peter Tellis takes the reins from Pat Coyle, who’s stepped up to the bench for the senior Adanacs.
Tellis formerly guided the WLA’s Burnaby Lakers and was named that league’s top coach in 2019 after guiding his charges to fifth place in the standings.
The Port Coquitlam Saints didn’t have a pick until the third round, where they selected Ty Fisher, of Ridge Meadows, 18th overall.