American and Canadian universities are always on the lookout for prospective new talent for their field lacrosse programs.
The Okanagan Sun Devils program is committed to giving local athletes the tools to pursue such opportunities by landing scholarships and playing the sport at the university level.
The Sun Devils, a rep field lacrosse club, are based at UBC Okanagan and currently run two active teams—U18 and U15.
The program is designed to expose the valley’s the best local lacrosse talent on the U.S. stage, with the goal of helping players graduate to university programs in the U.S. or Canada.
Games for the younger players are geared more to fun, with the top talent graduating to the top U18 team.
The U18s are a showcase team which plays in high school tournaments in the U.S.
Sun Devils players are required to maintain top marks in school to maintain eligibility on the team roster.
“This is a great concept that makes school just as important as staying fit and the players are working hard to make it a reality,” said Sun Devils coach and director Randy Reynolds.
Last month, the U18s went undefeated in round robin play at a tournament in Bellingham, before falling short against a high-powered Skyline High School team from Seattle.
“The Sun Devils surprised a lot of people down there and had fans coming to watch this unannounced Canadian team who were rocking their division,” said Reynolds. “Key Kelowna players are Kieran McKay, Matt Blanchard, Matt Katinic and Christian Riedy.”
The end of March had the U15 junior high school Sun Devils invade Wenatchee, Wash. for their yearly Jamboree. The junior Sun Devils piled up goals and won every game by running strong systems consistently each game.
“Our program is designed to get players games up to the next level so we can play against the top American teams out there,” Reynolds added. “Our guys want to go to university and the scouts only show up for playoff games of good tournaments. So we need to come out flying at every tournament to make it to Sunday afternoon. These past weekends looked very good. It’s been a lot of work to get everyone on the same page but we seem to be getting it and the future looks very bright.
“We had some young Kelowna talent really step up as well with Kieran McKay in net, Isaac Dutka, Mason Salway and Kyle Durik.”
The Sun Devils could have space for you if you’re a serious lacrosse player. Contact coach Reynolds at firstname.lastname@example.org right away for summer, fall and winter field lacrosse programs. U15 is the team to learn the ropes and is for ages 13 to 15.