Coach Mike Scott has won six provincial silver medals as a lacrosse coach, but on Sunday he and the group of athletes he has coached as they came up in Burrards lacrosse all finally won gold.
The Burrards Bantam A1 team won the gold medal at the provincial championships in Delta over the weekend.
They didn’t make it easy on themselves. After losing two of their first three games in the round-robin portion of the tournament, Scott said it was looking like they might be finished early. There were six teams in the tournament, most of them evenly matched, and only four advanced to the medal rounds.
They started with a 9-5 in over Coquitlam, but then suffered losses to Juan de Fuca (6-5) and Langley (9-7). It was just a few lapses that nearly cost them the tournament. In a 9:30 a.m. game, Juan de Fuca caught the Burrards sleeping in, scoring five goals before the Ridge boys finished hitting the ‘snooze’ button. The locals rallied well, but couldn’t come all the way back. Against Langley, a parade to the penalty box – 17 minutes worth of infractions – gifted the Langley squad with five power play goals.
Again, Scott was happy with his team’s response, but the hole they dug was too deep to get out of.
Scott, a fan of the Green Bay Packers and a devotee of famed coach Vince Lombardi’s famous quote “Winners never quit, and quitters never win,” made that the mantra for the weekend.
Friday they beat New Westminster 7-3, then finished round-robin play with a 10-1 beatdown of Delta.
The 3-2 record was good for second place, and they entered the semi-final on Sunday morning against Langley. Will Clayton scored six goals in a 9-5 Burrards win, to advance the team to the finals.
On Sunday they beat Coquitlam 11-4 to win gold. Clayton had five goals in the gold medal game, and his heroics in his team’s biggest games of the year won him the overall tournament MVP award. Dylan MacIntosh also scored a hat trick in the final.
Goaltender Nate Faccin was selected as the MVP of the final game, surrendering just four goals in the biggest game of the year. The desperate Coquitlam coaches called for a pad check against Faccin, and if they were found to be too big he would have been kicked out of the game, but he passed every test on the day.
Other game MVP awards went to MacIntosh, Daytin Vidovich, Noah Bloom and Nick Scott.
Coach Scott has known the kids for a long time, and said they are a special group.
“It’s the heart of this team – they play for each other,” said Scott. “There was not one kid on this team who did not give 100 per cent.”
Four players will be with Team B.C. at the nationals: Clayton, Vidovich, MacIntosh and Connor Evers.