The North Okanagan Everton Ridge Bantam Legends minor lacrosse team was the toast of New Westminster.
The Legends scored four unanswered third-period goals to beat Nanaimo 10-8 in the final of a tournament at the legendary Queens Park Arena in New Westminster, home of the Western Lacrosse Association’s New Westminster Salmonbellies. North Okanagan was undefeated in the tourney.
“The final was a roller coaster ride of leads and deficits with the Legends sealing gold in the third period with four unanswered goals. This after giving up the lead as Nanaimo scored unanswered goals in the second period,” said Legends spokesperson Jay Shaw.
“What a ride. The team really came together and rallied for the gold-medal win.”
Cole Gartner scored four goals in the final for the Legends. Ethan Lucin led the team with five points—two goals and three assists. Game MVP Lucas Aeichele scored three times and Bryce Gullickson had the other goal.
The North Okanagan team opened the tournament with a 2-1 victory over Delta behind goals from Aeichele and Lucin. Gartner had an assist while goalie Jace Collard, who played every game, was named game MVP.
The Legends defeated Cowichan Valley 6-2 behind 3+1 from game MVP Lucin. Jakob Friesen had 1+1 and single goals from Korban Danby and Heatly Jeffers. Alecia Hughes and Gartner had assists.
North Okanagan beat Nanaimo 5-4 in the preliminary round, with Gartner earning MVP for his three-goal effort. Friesen and Jeffers had the other goals.
The Legends advanced to the final with a 5-4 win over Surrey as game MVP Jeffers scored three times, Lucin had 1+2 and Gartner had the other marker. Friesen added an assist.
“The entire team came together really well during this tournament, it was great to see,” said Shaw. “Every single player had their own shining moments to contribute to the success of the weekend. It was great to see, and what this team really needed.”
Other members of the Legends include Eden Fox, Kole McAstocker, Samantha Shaw, Tristan Bernard, Alyssa Patterson and Chloe Scabar.