It was an amazing week in Adelaide for the ALA Under 15 National tournament.
20 teams from WA, SA, VIC and New Zealand competing for the win. And win, lose or draw (followed by sudden victory) these kids all left with some amazing memories.
I would like to thank Lacrosse SA for allowing me to have a stall to show my wares. It gave me the opportunity to meet some amazing people (kids, coaches, parents and officials) all who love the game and were happy to give me some tips, tell me some stories and reminisce about the past. It was a fantastic experience for me and I have been involved in these comps before. So to Steve Mortimer and Guila Marrion and Lacrosse SA... thanks! And sorry I didn't get to say it in person after the tourney but my wife and kids were desperate to get to Yorkes for the rest of the October long weekend!
To all the boys and girls who came to my stall, I want to say thanks to you too. Every single kid I interacted with was polite, and pleasant to interact with. I want to mention a few lads from the NZ boys team, Alex Wang, Liam Baber and Kieran Snape who all had stories to tell about NZ lacrosse and were happy to listen to an old bloke live in the past!
Notably for me, I learned a lot about the amazing efforts of the referees. It is the one area of a tournament I had never seen. I have played and coached but never been a referee. These guys and girls are the most scrutinised people in the whole tournament. Not only do they put up with attitude from the players, coaches and crowd, but every action is scrutinised by an assessor. Each ref on the field had an assessor watching his every move. One junior ref said to me that he loved it because it wasn't a bashing after the game but a legend of the refereeing world like Laslo Tiszavolgyi or Robin Stevens or even World Champ GF ref Jon Kiploks would be providing some constructive tips on how they could be better at their craft. The zebras are truly an amazing team! (Which is hard for me to say!!! Haha...)
Photo Credit: EX Photography
There was so much respect for the game and the past and present during the tournament that my favourite moment came from a day I was not even there. The lacrosse community, particularly in Adelaide, lost a great lacrosse man, Anthony "Shockers" Munro. He was honoured respectfully during the tournament. The day following his passing, all the SA teams wore black armbands in his honor and they had a minutes silence before their games. The below pictures are a testament to this.
Photo Credit: Eagles Lax Photos
What you are looking at are 2 gentlemen, Tony Watts and Paul Scuteri, who give so much to the sport whether by coaching rep teams, commentating for ALN or doing school clinics to #growthegame paying their respect by wearing shirts that were made as fundraisers for Shocks family. An amazing couple of images in my opinion!
If you can, please help the Munro family by donating here
The standard of lacrosse was fantastic. Both grand finals in the boys and girls showcased some great lacrosse and with 20 teams participating in this tournament, 300 kids have had an amazing experience that can only be positive for the future of our game.
Enough from me. Keep chasing those groundballs!
Cover Photo Credit: EX Photogrpahy