Armstrong’s Brayden Hoggarth (No. 99)

Armstrong’s Brayden Hoggarth (No. 99)

Sun Devils showcase field lacrosse talent

Sun Devils battle in U.S. field lacrosse tourneys to showcase local talent.

March Madness was on the field last month as the Okanagan Sun Devils Field Lacrosse Club sizzled in tournament play.

The Sun Devils are a Rep club based out of UBC Okanagan in Kelowna. They currently have two active teams –  Under 18 and U15.

The program is designed to showcase top lacrosse players on the U.S. stage so they can graduate to play at the university level in North America.

“The program teaches the basic systems of field lacrosse to advanced players,” said Sun Devils’ director and coach Randy Reynolds. “The younger guys play more fun weekends and the top talent will graduate to the U18 top team which is a showcase team which plays in high school tournaments throughout the U.S.

“Sun Devils players are required to maintain top marks in school to maintain eligibility on the team roster. This is a great concept that makes school just as important as staying fit, and the players are working hard to make it a reality.”

The U18s went undefeated in round-robin play at a tournament in Bellingham, eventually falling to a high-powered Skyline high school entry out of Seattle.

“The Sun Devils surprised a lot of people down there and had fans coming to watch this unannounced Canadian team who were rocking their division.”

Key North Okanagan players were Ryan Sarazin, Thomas Landels, Nick Hartel, Brayden Hogarth, Liam Drabiuk, Marlon Forrest, Steele Pelletier and Ryan Pelkey.

The U15 junior Sun Devils went to Wenatchee, Wash. for their yearly jamboree and  won every game while recording some great goals by running strong systems consistently each game.

“This was a big stepping stone for our program,” said Reynolds, a realtor. “Our program is designed to get players’ game up to the next level so we can play against the top American teams.

“Our guys want to go to university and the scouts only show up for playoff games of good tournaments. So we need to come out flying at every tournament to make it to Sunday afternoon.”

Reynolds praised the Sun Devils for running disciplined systems and controlling the neutral zone which led to fast breaks and a lot of quick goals.

“It’s been a lot of work to get everyone on the same page but we seem to be getting it and the future looks very bright. We had some young North Okanagan talent really step up for the U15s like Drew Bannister, Mykl Drabiuk, Jordan Barr and Conner Forrest.”

The Sun Devils could have space for more serious lacrosse players. Contact Reynolds at 250-938-4111 for summer, fall and winter field lacrosse programs. U15 is the development team, open to ages 13-15.