Brooklin Veterans Moved to WLA
By Sam Laskaris
The roster of the Brooklin Lacrosse Club will have a considerably different look this season.
The club’s brass announced on Wednesday that it has transferred the playing rights of four of its key players to squads in the British Columbia-based Western Lacrosse Association (WLA).
Ryan Keenan has been dealt to the Maple Ridge Burrards. Austin Shanks is headed to the New Westminster Salmonbellies. And both Graeme Hossack and Adrian Sorichetti will be joining the Victoria Shamrocks.
Brooklin’s general manager Brad MacArthur recalled his organization also saw a handful of the team’s stars head to WLA franchises two years ago.
Yet the Brooklin squad was still able to have a respectable 2017 campaign.
“I expect us to compete as well as we did then,” MacArthur said of Brooklin’s upcoming 2019 campaign.
Brooklin is one of six squads that will participate in the Major Series Lacrosse (MSL) loop this season.
Brooklin’s season opener is scheduled for June 2, on the road against the Cobourg Kodiaks. That match, at the Cobourg Community Centre, has a 6 p.m. faceoff. Brooklin’s home opener is set for June 5 against the same Kodiaks. That 8 p.m. match will be staged at Brooklin’s home rink, the Iroquois Park Sports Centre in Whitby.
Also participating in the MSL will be the Brampton Excelsiors, Oakville Rock, Six Nations Chiefs and the two-time defending Mann Cup champion Peterborough Lakers.
MacArthur prefers to look at the fact that Brooklin will have plenty of new faces in its lineup as a positive.
He anticipates a number of players who a year ago primarily toiled with Brooklin’s Senior B affiliate, Merchants Lacrosse, but also saw some action in the MSL to have more impactful roles this season.
“It provides our younger players and draft picks an opportunity to play larger minutes in the Major Series league,” MacArthur said. "We have draft picks wanting to make an impact and NLL draft eligible players that will get an opportunity to play larger roles"
The Merchants will play a significant chunk – seven out of their 16 regular season matches – before Brooklin plays its MSL season opener.