Two young lacrosse players are making sure the Cowichan Valley has representation in the national championships for both box and field lacrosse.
At the end of this month, Colton Lidstone will head to Whitby, Ontario for the Canadian U16 box lacrosse championships. In late August, Mathieu Jung will head to Halifax with Team BC for the national U18 field lacrosse championships.
This will be Lidstone’s first time with a provincial team after 12 years in the sport. After making the top 30 at the initial tryouts, be was informed in an interview with the head coach that he cracked the final roster.
“It felt pretty good,” he said. “I was pretty surprised.”
Lidstone played box lacrosse this summer with the Cowichan Valley Lacrosse Association’s midget A Thunder. In the fall, he will play field for the Mid Island Lightning as well as Claremont Secondary School, where he and Jung both attend the lacrosse academy.
“It’s fun,” Lidstone said of Claremont. “There’s a lot of lacrosse.”
Lidstone prefers box lacrosse to field, but he did try out for the U18 field lacrosse team, making the second round of cuts despite being two years younger than some other players. In early 2016 he will be eligible for the B.C. Junior A Lacrosse League’s draft of graduating midget players.
Helping to make his trip to Ontario possible are some sponsors, including the Cowichan Valley Lacrosse Association and the Galley Grill in Shawnigan Lake.
For Jung, this will be the second trip to the field lacrosse nationals after he helped B.C. to silver at the U16 tournament in Edmonton in 2014.
“It’s a pretty good feeling, knowing you’re one of the best players at your position in B.C.,” he said.
This being a return trip to the tryouts, Jung was feeling better about his chances.
“I think there was a sense of confidence from having been there before,” he said. “My coach this year is the brother of my coach from last year, so we practiced with him a lot.”
Even though he has been to nationals before, he’s anticipating the trip to Nova Scotia even more.
“I’m more excited. I haven’t been past Ontario, so it will be nice to see that side of Canada,” he said. “Plus, we’ve got a good roster with quite a few guys committed to schools.”
Some of those players will be heading to their new colleges and checking in right before they join Team BC in Nova Scotia. With any luck, Jung will be in that same boat next year, as he has set the firm goal of getting a scholarship before his Grade 12 year at Claremont is over.