The Quebec Senior Lacrosse League opens its season tomorrow and for the first time there will be five teams, with the Kahnawake Tomahawks and Sherbrooke Express joining the league. Kahnawake of course has had a rocky off season and have been in the news, but nonetheless they will play this year as the season gets underway.
“With respect to the Tomahawks, the QSLL is looking forward to hear an official statement from Kevin Biggs or someone of his entourage in order to shed some light into the matter but I would like to point out that while the team name is the same, it was a borrowed name. While difficult, no association should be made with the QSLL team.” said QSLL commissioner Patrick Lavigne. “This should also not hinder the QSLL credibility. In fact, the QSLL has long confirmed its 2014 schedule and the Tomahawks have met all of their obligations thus far and are in good standings.”
Tomorrow night the season opens up as the Kahnawake Mohawks, a team from last season, plays at Sherbrooke at 8 pm. Kahnawake boasts a roster that includes Luke Wiles, Dean Hill, Ty Thompson and Callum Crawford. Meanwhile, the Extreme roster has several players new to the league.
Goaltender Pascal Nolet did play in one game with Vermont last season where he made 41 saves in a loss where he gave up 12 goals to the Mohawks. Oliver Damphousse put up 27 points with Ottawa last season and will be one of the top scorers in Sherbrooke.
“We are getting pumped for the 2014 season, with two new teams joiningWe are very excited with the return of the Extreme, after a five year hiatus. The Extreme will be a young team and will surely cause some upsets. They have been the Sr C champs for the last five years. They have a solid foundation with a vast minor system and some great lacrosse heads overseeing their lacrosse program. Sherbrooke can also count on a great number of local medias (TV, Radio and Newspapers) and will be visible across the province of Quebec. The Tomahawks and Extreme will battle the existing teams; Kahnawake Mohawks, Ottawa Axemen (both of whom played in the 2013 Presidents’ Cup) and the Vermont Voyageurs.”
In the past, the Quebec teams played their games against the teams of the Three Nations Lacrosse League, but that will not be the case this season. The other two returning teams are the Vermont Voyageurs and Ottawa Axemen. Ottawa brings in last season’s leading scorer Tim Bergin, while Vermont has several former NLL players such as Ethan Farrell, Ryan Hotaling, and Chris McElroy.
“The off season was pretty busy for the QSLL. The TNSLL announced earlier this year they were not looking at renewing its interlocking partnership with the QSLL for the 2014 season to allow both leagues to work on expansion. Both leagues partnered since 2009 to allow for more games to be played while both leagues were fighting to keep “the game going”. We are now confident that both leagues can survive and expand slowly and surely. The QSLL has since accepted two (2) new teams into the league, the Sherbrooke Extreme and the Kahnawake Tomahawks whereas the TNSLL has recently added a new team from the community of Tynedinega.”
This off season for the league has seen Vermont take part in several activities such as the tournament with the Syracuse Stingers. Consistently, they have been one of the best American lacrosse teams to grow the sport of box lacrosse.
“Vermont fell short to their 2013 objectives but are looking solid for the future. Notably, the Voyageurs have been amazing promoters of lacrosse on both sides of the border. Their approach to the game is, simply put, professional and full of potential. They basically have access to a limitless number of players across the US and now building on a Junior program and minor system which in time will feed the Senior team. We often read that lacrosse is the fastest growing sport in the US and the Voyageurs have surely been part of this expansion and simply put, just great ambassadors of the sport and the QSLL. The league website (WWW.LCSQ-QSLL.CA) is now constantly getting no less than a thousand hits per week. I can only assume that Voyageurs have something to do with this.”
The season kicks off tomorrow night before the next games take place on May 10 as Sherbrooke travels to Ottawa.