By Sam Laskaris

Ryan Barnable is one step closer to eventually suiting up for the organization he grew up idolizing. That’s because the Brooklin Lacrosse Club has announced Barnable will be one of the players it will be protecting ahead of the Major Series Lacrosse (MSL) Entry Draft. This five-round affair, which will be held virtually, is scheduled for this Thursday (Mar. 18).

All six MSL squads are allowed to protect a maximum of four graduating juniors from their affiliate organizations ahead of the draft. Brooklin is taking advantage of this rule and protecting four individuals. Besides Barnable, the franchise is also protecting Brady Kearnan, Tyler Eames and Darren Elliott.

Barnable is currently toiling with the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) Tigers, an NCAA Division III field lacrosse team. He had planned to follow the MSL draft to see if his name would be called. But now that’s not necessary since Brooklin placed him on its protection list. “I didn’t know what route they were going to go in,” Barnable said of Brooklin’s pre-draft strategy.

While growing up in Whitby, Barnable was a huge supporter of the Brooklin franchise, previously called the Redmen. As a youngster, he attended as many as a half dozen week-long summer camps organized by the organization. Barnable added he would also attend as many of the team’s games as he could. “My minor coach was (former Brooklin star) Shawn Williams and we’d always go and watch his games,” Barnable said.

Barnable also played for Williams at the high school level. Williams coached the Whitby-based Donald A. Wilson Secondary School field lacrosse team. Under Williams’ tutelage, Barnable and his teammates captured the bronze medal at the Ontario high school championships in both his Grade 11 and Grade 12 years.

Barnable has also played before for Brad MacArthur, Brooklin’s current head coach and general manager. During the 2016 season Barnable played for the MacArthur-coached Green Gaels’ Junior B team. That Clarington-based club captured the silver medal at the Founders Cup tournament. The host Orangeville Northmen defeated the Green Gaels in the championship final of that national event.

Barnable went on to play three seasons at the Junior A level with the Whitby Warriors. “Barney is a smart kid that has made important contributions to his teams as his role has evolved,” MacArthur said. MacArthur added Brooklin team reps are confident Barnable will also prove himself at the senior level. “As a staff we feel he's poised for a solid career,” he said.

Though he is now Brooklin property, Barnable is waiting to see if there will indeed be some box lacrosse played in Ontario this spring and summer. All box teams in the province had their 2020 campaigns wiped out because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Depending on how successful his RIT team is this year, Barnable is planning to return home in either late May or early June.