(WINDSOR, ON) – The Windsor Clippers Junior B lacrosse club is about to take to the floor for its 15th season. In the wake of the graduation of National Lacrosse League prospect Logan Holmes and compatriot Ryan Marchand, the likes of Patrick Kaschalk, Josh Jubenville, and Liam Leclair have been scooped up by the teams of the Ontario Junior A Lacrosse League.
Despite this, augmented by an excellent crop of midget graduates from the Windsor Warlocks minor system, the Clippers look like they will still be a force to reckon with this season.
Newly minted captain Andrew Garant and his assistants, Austin Thompson and James Morgan, look to make this a year to remember for the Windsor lacrosse faithful.
“The excitement is crazy right now,” said Garant. “Just want to get this season started. [We’ve] got three games this week and they are all winnable games and I know the boys are ready to get going.”
The Clippers have picked up a solid core of rookies this year to bolster their squad, including Jake Rosa, Jackman Schooley, Nathan Salaris, and goalies Joel Evans and Carsen Hebner, all fresh out of midget.
Windsor also made a foreign acquisition; David Beckmann, a field player from Germany, who is new to the indoor game.
According to Garant, Beckmann brought a solid work ethic to camp and is adapting to the box lacrosse experience.
“We look very solid this year with a lot of young guys and we have a good group of vets,” said Morgan. “The league is gonna be tough again with Orangeville and Six Nations still at the top, but I think we have a very athletic team that can beat anyone in this league.”
Thompson and Garant, as well as Phil Ristoski, Dylan Riley, Jacob Corra, and Jesse Macdonald, are all in their final year of Junior B eligibility and relish the opportunity to take another run at the Founders’ Cup.
“I can not wait for this lacrosse season to start,” said Thompson. “Being able to play my last year with a team and organization as great as the Clippers is truly amazing. We have some big holes to fill with our offence, from losing [Holmes] and Marchand, but I have complete faith in the boys up front to get the job done. Our defence is still solid and our goaltending keeps getting better day by day. It’s going to be a very fun year.”
“We were very close last year and we can make a good run this year again,” added Morgan.
“We might be young, but when it comes down to playoffs these young guys will be good and our vets will be even better …” stated captain Garant.
The Clippers begin their season tonight in London as they meet the 0-3 Blue Devils to open the year. Windsor’s home opener will take place at Forest Glade Arena on April 29 at 7:00pm.