Saanich’s Luke Neary was the first overall selection in the BC Junior A Lacrosse League Draft.
The six-round draft was held on Saturday (January 21) at Langley Events as the league’s eight teams selected graduating U17 players in the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island whose minor lacrosse associations do not have a Junior program in their catchment area.
The Port Coquitlam Saints held the top selection and used it on the left-handed Neary, who is 6-2 and 200 pounds and already committed to play field lacrosse collegiately at the University of Michigan.
He is described as a big, strong athletic left-hander and while it may be his offensive prowess which catches scouts’ eyes, what really stands out is his athletic competitiveness all over the floor. “He can play physically on defence, use his strength and speed to get up the floor in transition and can score from the outside or in tight. He’s an athlete and that’s what makes him a great addition to any team,” reads a scouting report from one of his coaches.
While it was an island player going first overall, the rest of the first round was dominated by players from the Ridge Meadows Burrards Minor Lacrosse Association.
The Delta Islanders selected Blake Young (second overall), Scott Williams (fifth overall) and Jamison Thomson (eight overall) while the New Westminster Salmonbellies chose Ewen Patrick and Parker Sorenson third and fourth overall, respectively. The Saints also had the seventh pick in the first round, using it on Parker M’Lot.
The Burnaby Lakers, Coquitlam Adanacs Langley Thunder, Nanaimo Timbermen and Victoria Shamrocks did not have picks in the opening round, having traded them away last season.