WILMOT, ON – It was more like a lacrosse jam session than a game, but the fans still got a show at the Canadian Lacrosse League’s All-Star game, which was played in Wilmot, Ontario, Saturday afternoon.
The game featured this year’s Creator’s Cup winners, the Niagara Lock Monsters, against a team made up from selected star players from the other CLax franchises, including the Ohsweken Demons who were well represented.
It was all about fun, as players from both sides, showed off their favorite trick shots and had a few laughs along the way. The Lock Monsters won 19-16, if that matters.
It was also a time to hand out the individual player awards.
Six Nations’ Tommy Montour won the Transition Player of the Year award, and Chris Attwood took Outstanding Player of the Year honours. Other Ohsweken Demons selected to the team were Kehoh Hill, Wayne VanEvery, Blue Hill and Josh Johnson. Roger Vyse was filling in for Blue Hill who could not make the game.
“Everyone’s just kind of showing off their talent today,” said Vyse. “It’s good to get together with fellow players from some of the other teams. Nobody wants to get out there and get injuries, we just want to have a good time.”
Vyse has played in the NLL for several seasons and considers the quality of CLax lacrosse as comparable to it.
“There’s a lot of guys that just missed the NLL cut because they’ve shortened their benches there, and so they come here to play,” he says.
Vyse also plays in the summer Major Series League with the Mann Cup Champion Six Nations Chiefs where he hopes to try and repeat this year.
The fledgling CLax professional lacrosse league completed its third year of operation and is gaining momentum and respect as a second tier league to the National Lacrosse League,
CLax boasts several former NLL players or players still working their way towards an NLL career.
It is not a formal NLL affiliation as yet, but CLax organizers hope to evolve into that one day soon. But in the meantime, the CLax provides quality professional lacrosse at a fraction of the ticket price of an NLL game and is located in smaller centres.