There’s been an off-season trade in the Western Lacrosse Association. The Coquitlam Adanacs have acquired Jaeden Gastaldo from the Maple Ridge Burrards in exchange for Travis Irving and a fourth-round pick in the 2015 WLA draft, according to the WLA’s web site. Gastaldo was a second-round pick by the Burrards in the 2013 draft and posted five points in 17 games with Maple Ridge as a rookie. The transition player also had a strong freshman season with the Colorado Mammoth of the National Lacrosse League. Irving was selected by Coquitlam in the second round of the 2012 draft and has played a total of 25 games for the Adanacs in two seasons. Coquitlam finished fourth in the league in 2013 before falling to Langley in the opening round of the playoffs. Maple Ridge had a tremendous start to the season before faltering down the stretch to miss out on the post-season.
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The Maple Ridge Burrards are hoping Chris Gill’s success as a player will translate into success as a coach. The Burrards have brought in Gill as their new head coach, taking over from Darren Fridge, who retains the general manager half of his role with the team. Gill told the Maple Ridge News that he likes the look of his team. “They’ve had a good team the last few years, they have drafted well. The pieces are in place, player-wise,” he told the paper. He’s hoping those pieces can gel to help the team improve on its up and down season from 2013, which saw the club open with a 4-1 streak then suffer through a 4-9 run to close the season on the outside of the playoffs looking in. Gill said he’s excited about taking over a team on the rise. “A hundred per cent – you don’t want to go to a team that is on its last legs. You want a team that’s young and eager and wants to win. If you want to coach in this league, this is where you want to be. I’m excited to be part of the team, and we’re looking at taking a run at the Mann Cup this year, and for the next 10 years.”
The Maple Ridge Burrards are pleased to announce that Chris Gill has been appointed as the new coach for the 2014 season. As a player in the Western Lacrosse Association, Gill accumulated 482 goals and 351 assists in 282 games over 13 seasons. Gill’s teams made the playoffs nine times and he was a Mann Cup Finalist on two occasions. Chris also had a decorated NLL career with stops in Baltimore, Toronto, Vancouver, Colorado, Edmonton and Calgary. Along the way, Chris raised the Champion’s Cup three times and he recorded 557 points in 173 career NLL games, retiring from the NLL in 2010. “Chris’ craftiness around the crease will now transfer in his role as head coach. He interviewed very well and has some very creative plans to address some of our challenges from last season,” said Daren Fridge, Burrards General Manager. “We were looking for a dynamic leader with valuable experience at the highest level of lacrosse and Chris is exactly what we are seeking.”
Expectations were high for the Maple Ridge Burrards in 2013. They did not meet those expectations and it cost coach Daren Fridge his job. “I understand the decision,” Fridge told The Maple Ridge News. “We didn’t get the results we wanted.” After a 4-13-1 season in 2012, the Burrards were excited about their young offense in 2013 and they had every right to be. The Burrards scored 184 goals, second-most in the Western Lacrosse Association. A 5-2 start hyped the excitement, but the team was 3-8 down the stretch and the 189 goals-allowed were second-most in the loop. In that 11-game slide to end the season, Maple Ridge lost 4 goals by 1 goal and they finished the season with an 8-10 record and out of the playoffs for a second straight summer. Fridge will stay with the team as general manager and help with the search for a new coach.
Travis Cornwall had a 4-goal night including the game winner as the Coquitlam Adanacs downed Burnaby 13-12, denying the Lakers second place in the Western Lacrosse Association. Burnaby led 7-2 after the first period but the Adanacs had a huge second, outscoring Burnaby 10-2 with a pair of 4-goal runs and all 3 of their power play goals in the game. Burnaby worked their way back into a tie at 12-12 with the first 3 goals of the third period, but Cornwall won it for Coquitlam at 15:35. The loss means the Lakers finish third in the WLA and the Victoria Shamrocks will have home-floor advantage in the semi final series between the teams. Coquitlam, meanwhile, gains some momentum as they head into a semi against the first-place Langley Thunder. READ MORE »
Haven’t seen one of these for a while, but the Maple Ridge Burrards and Nanaimo Timbermen threw down in a big way last Sunday with a bench-clearing brawl. It all went down in OT, so you know tensions were high to begin with. The vid starts with a mad rush in the middle of the floor before we see some separate dances; one off to the right and then another off to the left. The numbers on the sweaters don’t match the scoresheet penalties at Pointstreak, so we’re not gonna give up any names lest we implicate the wrong fellas. But no matter who is doing what, it’ll be an interesting game on Saturday when these teams meet again, this time in Nanaimo.
The playoff picture in the Western Lacrosse Association greatly solidified Friday night as the Victoria Shamrocks clinched a spot and the Burnaby Lakers virtually assured themselves of making the postseason, albeit it very different fashions over a pair of teams fighting for the last spot. The Shamrocks dumped the New Westminster Salmonbellies 15-6 to leave the Bellies in fifth spot, one point behind the Maple Ridge Burrards. The Burrards scored 3 goals in the last minute of their game in Burnaby but it wasn’t quite enough as the Lakers held on for a 10-9 win.
Victoria now sits in second place with 20 points, two behind Langley, while the Lakers have 18. Burnaby’s win gives them the head-to-head tiebreaker over Maple Ridge, who is in fourth place with 14 points and two games remaining. The one wrinkle that makes things a little unclear is that Coquitlam has 11 points with four games remaining and could theoretically create a three-way tie for fourth. That scenario would take a highly unlikely series of events to unfold but is still possible. READ MORE »
All seven teams in the Western Lacrosse Association are still alive as we round the final quarter pole of this sprint to the finish. Langley and Victoria still stand atop the mountain, however the two teams are painting different landscapes as everyone battles for the right to host the 2013 Mann Cup. Langley has won three straight and is looking much like the team that has won the past two WLA titles. Conversely, the Shamrocks seem to be struggling with the newest additions and play a perfect Jekyll and Hyde. They will play smash mouth lacrosse Friday night in Victoria, which could be a WLA finals preview and will be a great measuring stick for both teams. READ MORE »
The Six Nations Chiefs ran their undefeated streak to 10 games (9-0-1) and their lead atop Major Series Lacrosse to five points with a 10-6 win over the Brooklin Redmen Saturday night. The first period made all the difference as the Chiefs outscored Brooklin 6-0 to establish a lead that the Redmen just couldn’t overcome. Kedoh Hill and Colin Doyle each scored twice and added an assist to lead the Six Nations attack. Six different players scored for Brooklin, with Derek Hopcroft registering 3 assists.
In the Western Lacrosse Association, the Victoria Shamrocks regained first place for at least one day when they downed the Coquitlam Adanacs 13-9 behind Scott Ranger’s 4-goal night and 6-point efforts from Rhys Duch (2g, 4a) and Corey Small (1g, 5a). The win gives Victoria a two-point lead over Langley for first place, but the Thunder have a chance to knot things up again when they face Maple Ridge tonight. Daryl Veltman was the top gunner for the Adanacs with a hat trick and an assist. READ MORE »
Well that wasn’t exactly what we expected at the trade deadline was it?!! The Langley Thunder load up even more as they add six players (three transfers from back east and three via deadline deals) and the Adanacs start the rebuild. Rosters are now set and some look completely different than they did this time last week. However, change isn’t always a good thing as the Shamrocks added a top level D guy but then fell to the streaking Lakers. The wild and crazy WLA just got insane and unreal in the blink of an eye and it’s anyone’s guess as to who is going to come out on top. The Thunder look to be the favourites now with the additions they’ve made but can the Burrards, Shamrocks and even the Lakers keep pace? How will the new-look, scaled-down Adanacs fare, can the T-Men make a late push and will the Bellies make any noise down the homestretch? Good luck trying to figure anything out this year. READ MORE »