Archive for the ‘Road to the Founders’ Category

Akwesasne Indians face familiar deficit in Jr. B playoffs against Halton Hills

The Akwesasne Indians have been here before, so can they do it again? Down 2-0 in their Junior B semifinal series to Halton Hills, the Indians need 3 big wins, and they need them consecutively to keep their season alive, along with their pursuit of a Founders Cup. Akwesasne faced a similar situation in the quarterfinals against Oakville, and they pulled it off to get to where they are now. But heading into Friday’s Game 3, the Indians are proceeding with a cautious confidence. “It wasn’t a good weekend for us,” GM Roy Ledoux told the Standard-Freeholder. “But all we can do is take it one game at a time.” The Indians lost their only regular-season matchup to Halton Hills, and the big question heading into Friday’s game is the status of goalie Sam Verville, who left Game 2 injured in the third period. Donovan Fleischer finished that game and may hear his number called again this weekend if Verville is unable to go.

Video: Sweet short-handed goal by Laidlaw helps Halton Hills take control

The Halton Hills Bulldogs have a 2-0 series lead on the Akwesasne Indians thanks to Sunday’s 13-7 win in Game 2. Seth Laidlaw scored 2 of the 13 goals for Halton Hills and while this short-handed goal in the second period didn’t exactly win the game, it certainly didn’t hurt. Check it out as Laidlaw goes airborn after an unmarked cut and cashes in to give the Bulldogs a 5-3 lead in the game. Halton Hills can clinch the series with a win in Friday’s Game 3. READ MORE »

Akwesasne keeps the faith in rallying past Oakville for berth in Jr. B semifinals

If you thought the Akwesasne Indians would have trouble rallying from a 0-2 deficit against the Oakville Buzz, you weren’t alone. Not many believed the Indians would pull it off, but the few who did have faith were the most important: The Akwesasne Indians themselves. “Three wins in three games, and we were shorthanded, missing six regulars. Wow. These kids just never gave up,” Akwesasne GM Roy Ledoux told the Standard-Freeholder. Making it even more impressive is that the Indians won all 3 games in Oakville after losing Games 1 and 2 at home. So now it’s off to the Junior B semifinals against Halton Hills but this time, the Indians have home-floor advantage for the best-of-5 series that starts on Friday. Of course, there is a downside to showing such pluck. “I think the team became men,” said coach Garrett Cree. “It was just a great moment, and now I expect more.”

Akwesasne confident it can rally with 3 road wins against Oakville to advance in Junior B

The Akwesasne Indians have been Junior B semifinalists the last 2 summers in Ontario. If they want it to be at least 3 straight summers, they’ve got a 0-2 deficit against the Oakville Buzz to erase, and that’s something the Indians are confident they can do. But making the challenge of winning 3 straight games even tougher is that the Indians need to win all 3 games at Oakville. “Yeah, we’re going on the road, yeah, everything’s working against us, but just relax, play lacrosse, and we’ll see what happens,” Akwesasne coach Garrett Cree told the Standard-Freeholder. “Just put the emotions aside, and enjoy it. Get that sadness out of the way.” Cree said his biggest challenge is restoring his team’s confidence after losing by 4 goals and 5 goals and giving up 25 goals in the first 2 games. “It will be tough, no doubt, but if we understand that we just have to win that one game, and go from there, we’ll be all right,” said Cree. Game 3 of the series is Friday at Oakville at 8 p.m.

Green Gaels confident they can overcome series deficit against Halton Hills

Will Petschenig leads the Green Gaels with 17 points through 5 games. (Photo: Devyn Gallagher)
Will Petschenig leads the Green Gaels with 17 points through 5 games. (Photo: Devyn Gallagher)

Yes, there is a sense of urgency among the No. 1 seed Green Gaels. No, it’s not panic. There is a difference. “I think if we have the same effort we did (Sunday) and we shoot a little bit better offensively, we’re going to be OK,” Green Gaels coach Brad MacArthur told of his team’s 0-2 Junior B playoff deficit against No. 4 seed Halton Hills. “We’re going to put ourselves in a position to go back to Halton on Friday.” The 13-5 loss in Game 1 wasn’t the start the Green Gaels wanted, but Game 2’s 7-6 loss was “one shot away from tieing it and putting it into overtime and getting some momentum.” Last summer, the Green Gaels rallied from a 0-2 deficit to beat Oakville in the semifinals. They’re confident they can do it again this summer to avoid their earliest playoff exit since a 2008 second-round loss to Halton Hills. “We have nothing to hang our heads about,” said MacArthur. Game 3 of this series is Friday at 8 p.m. at Garnet B. Rickard Rec Complex.

Last night: Shamrocks and Burrards tie 9-9

Pucker up, sis. It was time for a good old-fashioned tie in the Western Lacrosse Association last night. The Victoria Shamrocks remained unbeaten thanks to a Tyler Hass goal with 1:15 left in overtime that gave them a 9-9 tie with the Maple Ridge Burrards. The win leaves Victoria with a record of 8-0-2 atop the WLA standings while Maple Ridge stays at .500 with a 5-5-1 record. Curtis Dickson was his usual dynamic self for the Burrards, scoring 5 goals and adding 2 assists. Corey Small led the Shamrocks with 3 goals and 4 assists. The game also marked the WLA debut of Dhane Smith, acquired this week from the Kitchener-Waterloo Kodiaks of Major Series Lacrosse. He had a goal and two helpers for the Shamrocks. Neither team led by more than two goals the entire game, and the only two-goal lead lasted just over three minutes. READ MORE »

Brandon Staal brings big scoring numbers when Green Gaels needed them the most

Brandon Staal has emerged as the stop scoring threat for the Green Gaels. (Photo: Green Gaels)
Brandon Staal has emerged as the stop scoring threat for the Green Gaels. (Photo: Green Gaels)

When the Green Gaels lost some big offensive guns heading into this 2014 season, they didn’t expect one of the smallest guys on the team to fill the large void. Then again, maybe they did. “I wouldn’t say he’s a good luck story because he’s worked for everything he’s got. He earned it.” That’s coach Brad MacArthur talking to about forward Brandon Staal who, despite rolling out the front door at 5-foot-7 and 155 pounds, led the Green Gaels in scoring with 93 points (43-50). Twice cut from the Green Gaels, Staal kept his nose to the grindstone and his reward also is rewarding for the team, which is counting on his leadership as the Junior B playoffs get started. “I’m a smaller guy and everyone sees you as an underdog and doesn’t think you can make a difference,” said Staal. “It’s a good push. On offence all the guys underestimate you that you play against.” Opponents can start to “underestimate” Staal again starting tomorrow, when the Green Gaels open their playoffs and their push for a Founders Cup title.

Rebels off to another intimidating start

The Six Nations Rebels have gotten used to winning championships and they're after another one this year.
The Six Nations Rebels have gotten used to winning championships and they're after another one this year.

The Six Nations Rebels have won the last three Founders Cup Canadian Junior B lacrosse championships and five of the last seven. They’re showing no signs up letting up early in the 2014 season. Actually, it’s not even that early anymore; the Rebels have played a quarter of their 20-game season and have dominated the opposition just the way they have throughout their run of excellence. Six Nations is 5-0 to start the season. Last night, they downed the Niagara Thunderhawks 16-7. That scored actually lowered their average goals per game scored and increased their goals per game allowed. That gives you an idea of how dominant they’ve been. The Rebels have lost only three regular-season games over the past three years, including none last summer. READ MORE »

Return of Seth Oakes, Chris George bolsters 2014 hopes for Akwesasne Indians

The Akwesasne Indians have the talent. Now, it’s a mental thing. “We’ll be strong, as long as the kids have a good mental attitude during the season,” coach Garrett Cree told The Standard-Freeholder. The Indians are off to a 1-0 start this season, and they’re confident they can go deeper than they’ve gone in the past, which includes the OLA semifinals (2013), the finals (2012) and quarterfinals (2011). A big part of this optimism is rooted in the return of Seth Oakes and Chris George, who played Junior A last summer but have come back to Junior B. “It’s pretty weird to say, but two players can make a big difference, and with Chris George and Seth Oakes we have that, plus our guys are all a year older, more experienced … it all helps,” said Cree. The Indians continue their season with a pair of games this weekend, tonight at Oakville and Sunday away to Orillia.

Edmonton Rush dump Vancouver Stealth 10-5 to finish off record-setting season

Kyle Rubisch, here against Minnesota, showed he can handle the ball with a pair of goals for the victorious Edmonton Rush. (Photo: Codie McLachlan)
Kyle Rubisch, here against Minnesota, showed he can handle the ball with a pair of goals for the victorious Edmonton Rush. (Photo: Codie McLachlan)

The Edmonton Rush (16-2) are awfully tough to beat when their defensive unit plays its usual smothering style and chips in on the offensive end of the floor. That was the case last night as the Rush took a 10-5 win over the Vancouver Stealth (4-13). Edmonton rode a 6-2 second quarter to the win in a game that was close otherwise. Defender Kyle Rubisch was one of three players to score 2 goals each for the Rush, who extended their record for them most wins in a National Lacrosse League regular season and regained some momentum heading into the playoffs. Curtis Knight and Robert Church each had 2 goals and an assist for Edmonton. Lewis Ratcliff, with a pair, was the only multiple-goal scorer for the Stealth. READ MORE »