Archive for the ‘Road to the Presidents Cup’ Category

St. Catharines Saints to play host to 2015 Presidents Cup

The St. Catharines Saints of the Ontario Lacrosse Association have been named the host of the 2015 Canadian Lacrosse Association Senior B National Championships.

“We are very excited about the announcement and we are looking forward to hosting such a prestigious event in Niagara Region,” said Saints President Dave Colbourne. “We have a strong backing by our lacrosse community with the goal of putting on a first class National event. St.Catharines is known for its lacrosse history and is the home of the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame.

The week long tournament, involving the top Senior B indoor lacrosse teams from across Canada, is scheduled to take place August 31st – September 6th, 2015 at either the historic Jack Gatecliff Arena or the new Meridian Centre both located in downtown St. Catharines.

In their three years in Niagara, the Saints have had tremendous success winning three straight OLA Sr B Provincial Titles and in 2013 captured their first CLA Presidents Cup National Championship. This year’s Presidents’ Cup is being played in Coquitlam, BC.

St. Catharines Saints acquire goalie Davide DiRuscio

Davide DiRuscio starred for the Niagara Lock Monsters and now joins the St. Catharines Saints. (Photo: Tim Prothero)
Davide DiRuscio starred for the Niagara Lock Monsters and now joins the St. Catharines Saints. (Photo: Tim Prothero)

The Saint Catharines Saints have made a big acquisition to aid their efforts to win a fourth straight OLA Senior B title and second straight Presidents Cup championship. The Saints got goalie Davide DiRuscio’s Sr B rights from the Peterborough Lakers on Friday. While he didn’t start their game Friday night against the Sarnia Beavers, DiRuscio entered the game and played the third period, earning the win as St. Catharines emerged with a  10-9 victory. DiRuscio was named the Canadian Lacrosse League’s top goalie and Most Valuable Player in his rookie season with the Niagara Lock Monsters and helped lead them to the Creators Cup championship. He only played once for the Lakers, shutting out the Six Nations Chiefs in his relief stretch of a 10-5 loss in Peterborough’s second game of the season.

Between Lakers and NorthStars, Andrew Suitor is in for one busy summer

We’re close to summer, but there’s no such thing as a summer for vacation for Andrew Suitor. Not when he’s got promises to keep. Suitor, who recently finished his National Lacrosse League season as captain of the Minnesota Swarm, is going full tilt this summer with the Senior B Owen Sound NorthStars and the Peterborough Lakers of Major Series Lacrosse. It all started with his former Junior A teammates in Orangeville — Mike MacLeod, Mat MacLeod, Travis Gibbons and Adam Jones — who were making the drive to Owen Sound for games and practices. “I told them I really respected that and if one day they were playing (in Owen Sound) that I’d come and play with them,” Suitor told the Owen Sound Sun Times. “That sort of translated into this season. I’m keeping my promise.” So between the NorthStars and the Lakers, Suitor will be busy but he won’t be dogging it. “I love lacrosse and respect it too much to do something like that,” he said.

Last night: James Gang serving notice that they are serious contenders

Justin Kulla (13) and the James Gang celebrate one of their 15 goals last night. (Photo: Chris Hatton)
Justin Kulla (13) and the James Gang celebrate one of their 15 goals last night. (Photo: Chris Hatton)

When you think about the top teams in the OLA Senior B league, you naturally think about the St. Catharines Saints, the team that has won the last three Ontario titles and are the defending national champions. You may also think about the Six Nations Rivermen, who were new to the loop last year but made it to the league finals and who have come out to a strong start this summer. There’s another team that is doing its best to prove it needs to be taken seriously, though, and last night the Ennismore James Gang continued to succeed on that score, downing the Brooklin Merchants 15-7. The James Gang had an off year last season, finishing 8-8 and being swept by the Rivermen in the second round of the playoffs. They’re off to a perfect 4-0 start this year, though, and are looking like a well-balanced team. READ MORE »

St. Catharines Saints announce 2014 staff

The St. Catharines Saints announce 2014 coaching staff as Head Coach Jeff Dowling and Assistant Coach/Offense Matt Attwood both return for their second season after leading the Saints to the 2013 Senior B President’s Cup title. Also joining the staff for 2014 as Assistant Coach/Defense will be Jason Drury. “I am very pleased and excited to have Jeff and Matt back with the team.” said Saints General Manager Dave Colbourne. “Having Jeff and Matt return for a second season and adding Jason as a defensive coach makes us even stronger behind the bench. All three have had success as a player and coach and will look to lead the Saints to another National Title this summer.” READ MORE »

St. Catharines Saints and Owen Sound North Stars swap Senior B goalies

The Saint Catharines Saints have gotten off to an early start in preparing to defend their Presidents Cup title. The three-time defending Ontario Lacrosse Association Senior B champions have traded goalies with the Owen Sound North Stars, acquiring Ryan Masters in exchange for Scotty Komer. Komer shared the league’s top goaltender award with crease mate Jake Henhawk in 2013 when he posted a 5-2 record and 7.29 goals against average. The 36-year-old Komer didn’t appear in the playoffs as Henhawk carried the load. Masters, 24, posted a winning record for the 6-10 North Stars, going 3-2 with a goals against average of 9.46. The trade is actually a swap of teammates, as both goalies suited up for some games with the Major Series Lacrosse Brampton Excelsiors in 2013. Masters went 1-3 with a 10.17 gaa with Brampton while Komer was 0-4 with a 13.59 gaa. The Sr B season gets under way at the end of April.

Tri-City Bandits selected to play host to 2014 Presidents Cup

The Presidents Cup is headed to the West Coast. The 2014 edition of the Canadian Lacrosse Association Senior B championship will be held in Coquitlam, with the Tri-City Bandits serving as the hosts. Coquitlam is one of the three cities that comprise the Tri- City area, along with Port Coquitlam and Port Moody. The Bandits actually play out of PoCo. The tournament is slated for August 25-31. The tournament’s organizing committee points out that all three communities have strong box, field and school lacrosse programs, making the area one of the hot beds of the game.

“In 2013 the Bandits won their sixth straight provincial title and look forward to get a chance to compete for a national title on their  home turf,” says Bandits Team President Randy Clough. “A very strong organizing committee is looking forward to host an outstanding, memorable event for both spectators and participants. All games will be webcast and play by play lead Jake Elliot will be on hand to announce most games during the week. The recently renovated Poirier Recreation and Leisure Center is the perfect venue for this event; it is also home of The Coquitlam Adanacs from the WLA and the 2010 Minto Cup was also played here .

The OLA’s St. Catharines Saints won the 2013 Presidents Cup after having finished third and then second in the two previous years, in both of which the tournament was won by the St. Regis Braves from the Three Nations Lacrosse League.

Ian Llord won Champions Cup, Presidents Cup and Mann Cup in 2013

Ian Llord
Ian Llord

Ian Llord was looking forward to a pretty quiet summer after having won the Champions Cup with the Rochester Knighthawks. He was going to play some Senior B lacrosse with his hometown St. Catharines Saints and spend time at home with his family. Then he got a call from the Six Nations Chiefs of Major Series Lacrosse. Suddenly, his quiet summer became a steady series of games leading to a chance to win an exceedingly rare triple. By the time the dust settled, the quiet, hard-working defender had also won a Presidents Cup and a Mann Cup.

“It was never supposed to be like that. It was supposed to be a pretty relaxed, laid-back summer,” Llord told IL Indoor. “I was supposed to be working on my house, playing with my kids, stuff like that. But I’ve got a really understanding and loving wife and a really close family. It was good. It was a lot of lacrosse.” READ MORE »

Ian Llord has NLL title and Presidents Cup so far this season, is the Mann Cup next?

Ian Llord
Ian Llord

So how’s your 2013 going? Good? Great? Glad to hear it. Now let’s look at what Ian Llord’s been up to and compare notes. After he was cut by the National Lacrosse League’s Buffalo Bandits last fall, he landed on his feet in Rochester and won a Champion’s Cup with the Knighthawks in May. On Sunday, he won a President’s Cup with the Senior B St. Catharines Saints and on Friday, he’ll be with the Six Nations Chiefs to play for the Mann Cup in Victoria, B.C. “This is unbelievable,” Lord told The Fort Erie Times of the St. Catharines win. “This means a lot because I did it with so many close friends, my brother (Dylan), and local guys.” By anyone’s standard, that’s a pretty solid run. And just in case there’s a tie out there for most epic summer, let’s throw in Llord hanging with NASCAR star Tony Stewart at the Burger Barn back in early August. Game, set, match … to Llord.

St. Catharines wins Presidents Cup

Jason Mazachowski, left, and Mike Attwood, right, helped St. Catharines lower the boom on defense. (Photo: Larry Palumbo)
Jason Mazachowski, left, and Mike Attwood, right, helped St. Catharines lower the boom on defense. (Photo: Larry Palumbo)

After 8 games in 7 days, the St. Catharines Saints are champions of Senior B lacrosse. The Saints wrapped up a season’s worth of hard work and dedication with Sunday’s 8-5 win over the Kahnawake Mohawks to clinch their first Presidents Cup and finish the tournament in Kahnawake with a 7-1 record. The game was fairly evenly matched through the first 2 periods as the Saints took a 5-4 lead into the third period. But after Chris Attwood and Mitch Dumont opened the third with goals to give St. Catharines a 7-4 lead, the Mohawks couldn’t recover. Dean Hill scored the only goal of the period for Kahnawake and Jason Henhawk capped the scoring for St. Catharines with a goal in the final minute. The victory is sweet redemption for a Saints team that has come so close in seasons past with a silver medal last year and a bronze medal in 2011. READ MORE »