Much support on and off the gridiron

The Whaler’s running back star uses his recent tragedy as a little extra fuel on the field

A familiar sight this season as Coltin Laplante has found his way to the end zone 15 times

Coltin Laplante has been unstoppable at times, running through — or over — would-be defenders on the football field.

But about a month ago Laplante was dealt a heavy blow off the field, as his older brother passed away after a bout with cancer.

Laplante looks like a well- oiled machine carrying the ball and doing whatever it takes to march up the field. He’s also been acting with poise and doing whatever it takes to keep moving forward off the field.

“It’s been tough on my family,” Laplante said. “It’s hard to see my mom, she’s been hit real hard by it. Everyone is having a hard time with it, it’s not something you can really prepare for.”

His numbers on the field have been impressive. More than 1,000 yards rushing, 15 touchdowns and still counting for the bruising running back. But it’s not without help from his teammates, Laplante is quick to point out, that he’s had the success he’s had on the field.

“Everyone on this team has been great, we’re making great strides as a team,” he said.

“The offensive line has really done great work all season and allowed me to run the ball the way I’ve been running it so far. It’s thanks to them that we’re able to run the ball as a team the way that we have.”

Statistics aside, Laplante has had support from the team both on and off the field, as he tries to find his way through a tough time. It’s all a learning process for Laplante, as he looks to balance school work, football and having his brother on his mind.

“They’ve been great, they’re all there if I need them,” he said of his teammates. “We’re a tight team and it really helps things both on and off the field.”

Since his brother’s passing, he has felt like he’s had something more to play for, which can be a scary thought for opposing teams as he’s been running roughshod over defenders that try to stand in his way.

“I feel there’s more purpose, more reason to keep going,” Laplante said. “It feels like it’s an extra gear, when things get tough and you don’t feel like you’ve got anything left. There’s an extra bit of push that comes from thinking about it all for me out there.”

Laplante looks to continue finding that extra gear this weekend (see page A42) as the Whalers host the Argyle Pipers in a battle of two first place teams looking to head in to the playoffs on a winning note.

“We want this one bad, real bad,” Laplante said. “It would be nice to get that win and finish the season winning our last five games. We’ve got the guys to do it and we know that we can win. It’s going to be a tough game and we’re hoping to have a lot of support out there.”

Just Posted

Parksville Beach Festival Society launches campaign for outdoor stage

Public invited to event May 25 to help with kickoff

RDN looking into providing bus service 365 days a year

RDN transit committee to consider adding bus service on Christmas, New Year’s and Good Friday

Crime Report: Oceanside RCMP receive 328 complaints in one-week span

Vandalism and theft of a wheelchair among listed incidents

Controversial cell tower proposal in Coombs clears another hurdle

Committee indicates Rogers satisfactorily completed requirements

Parksville advocate to discuss harm-reduction measures for addicts

Morris, along with a panel of professionals, will be at the PCC on May 21

Kelowna RCMP interrogation video brings home reality in ‘visceral way’: former TRC chairman

Video of Mountie interrogating young Indigenous woman disclosing sexual abuse under fire

B.C. ferry stops to let bear swim past

Queen of Oak Bay brakes for wildlife in Nanaimo’s Departure Bay

One year after heartbreaking B.C. search, wife reflects on late husband

First anniversary of Ben Kilmer’s disappearance, and a search that galvanized Vancouver Island

Update: Mother dead, child in critical condition after carbon monoxide poisoning at Shuswap campground

The woman was found unresponsive insider her tent and the youth was taken via air ambulance to hospital

Canada’s parole officers say correctional system has reached breaking point

About half of Canada’s federal parole officers work inside penitentiaries and correctional institutions

Montreal researchers create audible hockey puck for visually impaired players

Three years ago, Gilles Ouellet came up with the idea for a puck that makes a continuous sound

Vancouver Island MusicFest: ‘House bands’ from the golden age of rock and R&B

Some of America’s greatest session musicians are coming to the Comox Valley this summer

Former B.C. Greyhound bus drivers head to Penticton for goodbye party

Big bash runs until Sunday, funded by drink cans left behind on busses over the years

Boy, 12, arrested after allegedly pulling a knife on another child at a Surrey park

The child was later released into his parents’ custody as Surrey RCMP continue their investigation

Most Read