OTTAWA, ON – Canada’s best up-and-coming box lacrosse players will get the opportunity to represent their country this fall, with the Canadian Lacrosse Association and Iroquois Nationals announcing today that they will face-off in a U17 game as part of the 2017 Heritage Cup in Hamilton, Ontario on October 21, 2017.
The U17 game will be played at the FirstOntario Centre prior to the Canadian senior team’s showdown versus the U.S., making for a full evening of exciting lacrosse action.
Athletes from across the country born in 2001 or 2002 are encouraged to apply for the team using the online form. Further details on the process, including eligibility criteria and costs, can be found on the form. The deadline to submit an application is Thursday, September 14.
This fall’s matchup will mark only the third time that these international lacrosse powerhouses will face-off at the U17 level, having previously played one another at the 2013 Heritage Cup in Montreal, as well in a pair of FIL-sanctioned games during the 2015 FIL World Indoor Lacrosse Championship on the Onondaga Nation.
“In 2013 we put the stake in the ground with our first U17 box lacrosse program and are excited to keep it going with this event,” said Johnny Mouradian, Director, Team Canada Box Lacrosse. “We want to continue working collectively with the Canadian Lacrosse Association and its Member Associations to establish an annual U17 program that aligns with lacrosse’s Long Term Athletes Development model.”
This game will provide athletes with a unique experience, exposing them to high level international competition and quality coaching, while letting them showcase their skills on one of the biggest stages.
Canada will face off against a talented Iroquois Nationals squad, one that views this game as a tremendous opportunity to grow box lacrosse and help their athletes become better both on and off the floor.
“The Haudenosaunee and Canada have been committed to the growth and development of box lacrosse and this match will only strengthen that game,” said Ansley Jemison, Executive Director, Iroquois Nationals.
“The U17 age group is important as it is a key developmental time for many young athletes before they graduate onto the Junior level,” added Jemison. “Players committed to hard work, healthy choices and fair play will continue to grow and become future standouts in the game of lacrosse.”
An international caliber event at the U17 level is something that Dean French, chairman of the Canadian national team program, also sees the importance in developing.
“We would like to see the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL) establish a world championship at the U17 level in the near future,” he stated.
Canada’s U17 coaching staff will feature many of the same individuals that were part of the event back in 2015, along with some new faces.
Josh Sanderson, Head Coach (Orangeville, Ont.)
Bruce Codd, Assistant Coach (Orangeville, Ont.)
Bill Greer, Assistant Coach (Oshawa, Ont.)
Brian Beisel, Assistant Coach (Georgetown, Ont.)
Curt Malawsky, Assistant Coach (Coquitlam, B.C.)
Todd Lorenz, Assistant Coach (Richmond, B.C.)