Raiders rush onto Team Alberta

Lacrosse: Okotoks minor lax sending seven players to nationals

By: Remy Greer

  |  Posted: Wednesday, May 21, 2014 06:00 am

Okotoks Raider Julia Porter is making her third straight trip to the box lacrosse nationals. She's joined on Team Alberta's Midget Female squad by teammates Ally Bymak, Katie McKinstry and Tarri Jessey.
Okotoks Raider Julia Porter is making her third straight trip to the box lacrosse nationals. She's joined on Team Alberta's Midget Female squad by teammates Ally Bymak, Katie McKinstry and Tarri Jessey.
Remy Greer/OWW

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A new power is emerging in female box lacrosse.

On the heels of impressive back-to-back bronze medal performance at the box lacrosse nationals, Okotoks Midget Female Raiders Julia Porter and Ally Bymak are hoping the third time is the charm as Team Alberta seeks to dethrone British Columbia and Ontario from the top of the heap.

“It’s a little bit different team, but a lot of the same skill. I think we’re going do really well this time,” said Porter, a Grade 9 student at Highwood High School. “We will try to get to the gold medal game. Ontario and B.C. are pretty big competition, but I think we have a chance.”

The confidence stems from consecutive trips to the podium at the Bantam level for the duo who produced duplicate bronze medal victories over Nova Scotia in 2012 and 2013.

Last year’s effort was especially encouraging.

Alberta defeated Ontario at the 2013 Bantam nationals for this first time in program history and were merely a few bounces away from the championship tilt.

“Team is really, really important. Especially at a high level,” Porter said.

“It can’t just be you, you can’t play selfishly. You have to use everyone as a two-year vet.”

She can certainly speak on the playmaking angle.

The 15-year-old was tops in assists and second in points at last year’s national tourney.

“It doesn’t matter about goals, but I would like to assist a lot because that just means I contributed to the goals,” Porter said.

“It’s my first year in Midget so I was pretty excited to make it. I’m looking forward to this year and next year.”

Bymak, a Grade 10 student at Foothills Composite High School, finished fifth in scoring at last year’s Bantam nationals.

They’ll be joined on Team Alberta by Raiders teammates Katie McKinstry from Calgary and Langdon’s Tarri Jessey at the Midget national tourney, Aug. 5-10 in Whitby, Ontario.

“I have good expectations for what this team will be able to do, for sure,” said Team Alberta coach Clint Bymak.

“It’s pretty cool to have four kids from a small club like ours make that team.

“It’s going to be a good group. A lot of really skilled, fast defensive players.”

Representing Okotoks for Team Alberta’s Bantam Female entry is Breanne Trotter. Alberta will be looking for its third consecutive podium finish at the nationals, held simultaneously with the Midget event in Whitby, after producing back-to-back bronze medals in the Bantam division.

High River’s Brydon Robichaud, an Okotoks Raider, will be suiting up for Alberta’s Bantam Male team at the Box Lacrosse Nationals held Aug. 2-10 in New Westminster, B.C.

Rounding out the local contingent is Okotoks Peewee Raider Mattias Flammenspeck.

He’ll also be competing in New Westminster with Alberta’s Peewee team.

For more information on the box lacrosse national championship go to albertalacrosse.com

rgreer@okotoks.greatwest.ca


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