The Westshore Bears junior B lacrosse team is on to the next round of the playoffs, thanks to another convincing win against the Nanaimo Timbermen on Sunday.
The Bears won 15-8 in Nanaimo after a 17-3 triumph last week to sweep the best of three series and will face the Saanich Tigers in a best of five series starting at 8 p.m. Thursday at The Q Centre.
Head coach Ryan Alexander said the team is excited to move on and “ready to go” in the next round.
Following the series-opening win last week, Alexander said the team is starting to excel in all facets of the game. “It was a rough series, but the boys handled the physicality well. We’re a very young team, with half the boys rookies,” he said regarding the range in ages from 16 to 21. “We have a great mix of experience and youthful enthusiasm. They take a lot of pride in their game and have come a long way in developing as a team.”
Alexander, who has coached the team for the past seven years, said the players consider each playoff victory another step toward their goal of competing in the provincials, after completing the regular season with a record of 13-1-4. “We seem to be peaking at the perfect time and the chemistry is great,” he said. “This is definitely one of the better groups I’ve had the pleasure of coaching.”
Alexander’s father, Ken, founded the team back in 2004 with some of the family’s closest friends from the lacrosse community who shared a passion for the sport, including James Morgan, Stephen Hussey, Wayne Bateman and Dave Appleyard.
“Lacrosse has been a big part of my life since I was 12,” Alexander noted. “My dad started when he was four and has been involved for 60 plus years, so I take a lot of pride in carrying on the tradition he started.”
Alexander also wanted to acknowledge the support the team has received from a dedicated group of volunteers. “They’ve all worked so hard behind the scenes to make the season a success.”