Prince Albert and area contingent celebrates U13 success at Box Lacrosse National Championships

Prince Albert and area representatives on Saskatchewan’s U13 Boy’s team, which won bronze at the recent Box Lacrosse National Championships in Regina, pose for a photo following the last game. From left to right are goalie coach Mason Hawkes, players Jaite Bexon, Carter Kulczycki, Seth Northey, and Bryn Beaulac, and head coach Javan Bexson. -- Submitted photo.

The Saskatchewan U13 Boy’s Lacrosse team, including a strong contingent of Prince Albert players, took home the bronze medal at the recent Box Lacrosse National Championships in Regina.

Prince Albert players Jaite Bexson, Bryn Beaulac, and Carter Kulczycki joined head coach Javan Bexon and goalie coach Mason Hawkes on the U13 squad. Goaltender Seth Northey from Macdowell was also on the roster.

Javan said it was great to be a part of the national championship, which featured 40 teams competing for seven trophies in the U13, U15, U17, and U22 age groups. The event also hosted U13 Girls teams for the first time.

“It was fantastic,” Javan said. “It was a great tournament and Regina did a great job hosting. It was all around a great experience for the athletes.”

The U13 Boys squad was the only Saskatchewan team to medal at the event. Bexon said he was impressed with the team’s commitment.

“It was a long summer with lots of training,” he said. “We started the process in February with try-outs. It was a lot of build-up and the boys came through in the end and made it all worthwhile.”

The U13 team finished the round robin with a 2-2 record after losses to Ontario and B.C., followed by wins over Manitoba and Nova Scotia.

After a tough 16-0 loss to Ontario in the semi-finals, Team Saskatchewan rebounded for a 6-5 win over Nova Scotia in the Bronze Medal Game. Jax Brown led the scoring for Saskatchewan with two goals and two assists. Nixon Friesen, Logan Porter, Holt Crossman, and Jaite Bexson had the other goals for Saskatchewan.

“It could have gone either way,” Javan said. “We had a really strong start, getting out (in front) 4-1 and they just couldn’t climb back and catch us.”

The national tournament was one of several major box lacrosse events happening in August. One of the biggest was the Junior NLL Championship in Oakville, Ont., where eight Prince Albert players represented the Saskatchewan Rush at the U13 or U15 levels.

Javan said it’s a sign youth lacrosse is going strong in the Prince Albert area.

“It shows that there’s lots of opportunities,” he said. “Hopefully the athletes keep coming back and keep on taking these opportunities because they’re there, and what great experiences for these boys and girls.”

With box lacrosse season over, Prince Albert lacrosse players will turn their attention to the field. The national U17 and U19 Men’s Field Lacrosse Championships will be played in Prince Edward Island in September.

Box lacrosse national results

Team B.C. defeated Team Ontario 4-2 to win the inaugural U13 Girls Box Lacrosse title. Team Saskatchewan fell 2-1 to Nova Scotia in the Bronze Medal Game.

At the U15 level, Ontario beat B.C. 6-5 to win gold in the boy’s bracket, while New Brunswick defeated Nova Scotia 5-4 to win bronze. On the girl’s side, Ontario beat B.C. 4-3 to win gold, while Nova Scotia beat Saskatchewan 3-2 to win Bronze.

In the U17 boy’s division, Ontario beat B.C. 11-7 to win gold while Alberta beat Saskatchewan 10-3 to win bronze. Ontario beat B.C. 5-2 to take gold on the girl’s side, while Alberta defeated Saskatchewan 11-5 to win bronze.

The U22 women’s championship saw Alberta beat Ontario 8-5 to win gold, while B.C. beat Quebec 7-3 to win bronze.