by Scott Austin:
Preparation for most team sporting events begins long before the actual tournament. There are try-outs, player interviews, team selections, and weeks of practices, all before the big event.
However, this is not the case for the participants in the BC Summer Games box lacrosse event. In fact, many of the teams entered have been together less than 24 hours before they take to the floor in their first game.
With so little time, how do coaches prepare their players to be a cohesive team?
Gord Cawthorne, head coach with Vancouver Island Box Lacrosse (Vancouver Island Central Coast – Zone 6) said, “Previous chemistry is key… you try and see who will be compatible together”.
“Medaling is one thing,” said Tim Winter, coach of Fraser River-Delta (Zone 4).
“But, seeing these kids getting thrown out there and becoming close friends over the three days” is another element of this unique event, he said.
Coach Dan Peterson, Thompson-Okanagon (Zone 2), acknowledges that with so little time to gel as a team, the coaches focus a lot on team building rather than the technicalities of the game. “We got all the kids together for a practice and a barbeque, just to get all the kids to know each other a little bit better.”
With so little time before the actual games and with only three days together during the competition, the experience is not only defined by the results.
“Having a group of strangers come together for a weekend and leave as buddies that’s what the BC Summer Games are all about,” said coach Winter.