Bucs sweep opener

Season-opener's a success for both Buccaneers teams

Buccaneer Ian Whibley drives hard for the net during Saturday’s regular season U16 Buccaneers’ home opener. Whibley and his teammates are off to a great start in Vancouver Island Field Lacrosse League action. 

It was a great start to the season for Oceanside field lacrosse, as both Buccaneers teams ran roughshod over their opponents on home field over the weekend.

On Saturday under ideal conditions at Springwood Park, the U16 Buccaneers blasted the Nanaimo Raiders 25-2, 16-3 in their regular season opening double header, and on Sunday the U14 Bucs followed suit by beating their counterparts from down the road 17-3. 25-6.

“The boys all played great; our defence held their ground and played strong, we had a couple goal scorers that were unstoppable, and our goalie had a great day,” said Evan Tuck, who co-coaches the U16 team with Derek Gaughan.

Leading the charge for the U16s with career highs (in field lacrosse) were Jory Clermont with eight goals and three assists, and Ian Whibley with seven goals and three helpers. Liam Lowery recorded a hat trick, “and the other thing is there were a lot of kids that scored goals and chipped in with helpers, so it was a real team effort.”

“They all played well — we were just dominating them,” team manager Tim Clermont concurred after. “It was a strong effort for sure. It’s going to be a good season.”

Rookie goalie Shane Houtman backstopped the Bucs to two more wins.

The U16 Bucs, which compete in the nine-team Vancouver Island Youth Field Lacrosse League, pencil in 14 players this year, three of those first year players.

“We didn’t have a U16 team last year we didn’t have enough players so a lot of these guys are reconnecting,” said Tuck.

On his rookie goalie Houtman, “he’s never played goalie in field lacrosse, and he’s doing great for us.

“Great bunch of kids — we’re really happy with them,” said Tuck. “We have a fairly strong team,” he said, “hopefully they’ll have a lot of fun this year, and we’re definitely still looking for more players to bolster our numbers.”

The Bucs were coming off a thrilling exhibition win over the Mid Island Thunder in Duncan the week before that saw Clermont (from Whibley) bulge the twine with one second left on the clock for a 9-8 win.

“We only had one exhibition game and it was a nail biter,” said Tuck. “It was a good confidence booster for the boys.”

IN U14 ACTION the Buccaneers hosted the Raiders for a double header that included a downpour.

In game one Dawson Fyfe and Ethan Bell led the young Bucs with three goals apiece. Taylor Kelloway and Arthur Miller potted five apiece for Oceanside in game two, and Derian Thompson helped the cause with four goals and a helper. Nicholas Lozier-Tilkin played goal for the two wins.

WANT TO PLAY for the Buccaneers? Both teams are still looking for more players. The Bucs practice at Springwood Park every Tuesday and Thursday from 7-8:30 p.m.