For a Junior Lacrosse Programme that thinks of itself as a winter adventure, this past summer has been pretty busy, fun and very successful. With the lighter evenings and cricket being played on the Spencer outfield, practices were switched to Thursday evenings on Wandsworth Common. Not as intense as the regular season but just enough for everyone to keep their skills moving forward.
10/11/12 May - The International School (ISB) Tournament – Brussels
We took a JV (i.e. u15) team to this brilliant event held on the school’s two huge 3G Astros with club and school teams coming from across Europe and as far away as Israel. We have been champions of the Varsity (u18) Tournament in previous years but lately the date of the event has clashed with GCSE’s and A Levels. To re-establish participation and with support from Maidstone and Pythons (thanks to all at both those Clubs) we entered a Spencer Academy team - really just looking to get the experience of this type of event into the players’ ‘cv’s’.
Travelling to Brussels does sound exotic (well, more exotic than Stockport – no offense to our friends in Stockport – a really friendly place!!) and is probably less stressful than driving up the M6. In reality, it’s quite an easy thing to do – driving or by Eurostar.
After a shaky start the team realised they could compete and ended the event in third place in the JV age group winning three out of five games over the weekend, learning loads about lacrosse and tournaments and starting to play some pretty good stuff on the way. AND, for Saturday evening, Dad David found a good restaurant in Zaventem close to the hotel. Winners all the way 😊
The Team: Freddie, Geordie, Taylor, Ollie & Will (Maidstone); Sam, Hayden & Rohan (Pythons); Jamie, Ty, Oscar, Jack & Fio (Spencer)
9th June - Junior Flags Tournament
Fixing a time and venue for the South Junior Flags turned out to be surprisingly tricky but the 3G down at the Surrey Sports Park in Guildford was secured – a great venue.
The u12’s played a combined Pythons/Maidstone team and we were pretty dominant. The experience and confidence developed over the season and particularly from our Northern Tour back in March has really fed into the individual skills and team play. The result was a whitewash game. Well done the guys!
The Team: Alan, Augustin, Dylan, Edward, Finn, Henry, Isaac, Kit, Max E, Otie, Ty, Oscar & Jamie
15th/16th June - U12’s in Brussels
Our friends at the Brussels Sports Association (BSA) host the event over two days using the ISB facilities. This is becoming a regular and much anticipated element in our Summer Programme developing both BSA and Spencer Juniors. The weekend programme comprises skills clinics and mixed scrimmages with our guys enjoying success in the final championship game.
It’s a great experience for the players to travel abroad, mix with and play different players. The event has a really great vibe especially at the group pizza in Watermael – Boisfort on the Saturday evening. A great opportunity for players, coaches and parents to get to know each other.
Our thanks to Craig and his team at the BSA for (again) hosting such an excellent event.
The Team: Alan, Ben, Dylan, Finn, Hayden, Jack, Max E, Otis, Quincy
22nd/23rd June - Honeywell Reach the Quarter Finals of the PopLax Nationals
One of the background reasons for the location of the mid-week summer Field Sessions up on Wandsworth Common is/was to support extra practice time for the Honeywell PopLax players - Honeywell School represented London in the National PopLax National Championships held at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield.
After a nervous first couple of minutes the team dominated their pool in the early stages of the Tournament and the Honeywell team was then drawn against Strathblane in the quarterfinals. The team tied the ‘regular’ game but lost on the toss of a coin for first possession in overtime and then lost the game itself. Strathblane went on to win the Tournament with Honeywell having run them closest to defeat. A tad frustrating but that’s crumbling cookies for you!
Another great weekend event and the kids were brilliant!
7th July – v Maidstone
Our final events of the summer were u12 & u15 games down at Maidstone – Sutton Valence in fact (sounds a bit like Royston Vasey but not so creepy). The team was missing quite a few of our more experienced players but Matt stepped up to face off in his first full u12 game, fitted straight in and pretty much controlled the game from there. A good game of lacrosse and another win.
Several of the older u12s stepped up to play u14s and with a couple of loan-ees from Maidstone we managed squeak a win in this category as well as playing in a fun game.
The Team: Max E, Matthieu, Otis, Ty, Kit, Alan, Dylan, Finn
What a really good summer and great year for everyone – and the u12s were unbeaten throughout the year.
Bring on Season 2019/20!!