In 2015, the Canadian University Field Lacrosse Association’s University of Ottawa lacrosse program will attempt to better itself, but it won't come easy.
After a 2014 season that saw the U of O program ?nish with a 3 win, 9 loss record, the newest university lacrosse program to Canada’s capital region looks to better themselves and hopes that being a year more experienced will help to improve some of last years shortcomings.
“On the whole, we were happy with our ?rst of?cial season in the league,” explained head coach Mike Dube. “Of course we know there is plenty of room for improvement, but we respect the level of play this league offers and hope being one year more experienced can help us to take another step towards becoming an elite program in the eastern conference.”
The U of O program will be returning several key cogs from last year's inaugural team including: team scoring leader, attacker Brandon Perras (Cornwall, Ontario); experienced mid?elder Shayne Snider (Caledon, Ontario); and defensive pillars Brandon Labelle (Cornwall, Ontario) and Connor Primeau (Cornwall, Ontario).
“Our staff is excited to be returning some high-end talent, but have made it clear to our guys that success cannot come at this level without continued growth,” said Dube. “Programs like McGill and Bishop’s have been successful for a long time in this conference. We recognize we have a ways to go to attain that level but don’t plan on giving any easy points away.”
University of Ottawa has received commitments from more than 18 freshmen and transferring student athletes and at the very least look to improve on their mark from 2014.
“We played some good lacrosse last season and made improvements as our season went on. At the very least, we hope we can use effort and ethic to translate what we felt were some bad bounces from last season into good ones this coming one,” noted Dube.
Ottawa will kick off its 2015 campaign on September 12 at 2pm at Gil O’Julian Field in Ottawa versus a formidable foe in the Queen’s Golden Gaels.
Notes: University Of Ottawa lost in last year's Baggataway Cup play-in game to McGill, who lost in the national title game to the University of Guelph. Brandon Perras ?nished last season 5th in CUFLA scoring with 52 points (12 games played, 25 goals, 27 assists). University of Ottawa is not the only Ottawa-centred team in the league—rival Carleton University Ravens will continue to compete in the 2015 season. The two teams will play a home-and-home series spanning cross-city. Other CUFLA eastern conference competition includes the Bishop’s Gaiters, McGill Redmen, Trent Excalibur, Concordia Stingers and Queens Golden Gaels. Training camp for the 2015 squad is slated to begin August 26 at Gil O’Julian ?eld.