Lacrosse's London Blue Devils appear on rise again, News (London Minor Lacrosse Association)

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Lacrosse's London Blue Devils appear on rise again
Submitted By Tyler Turner on Tuesday, April 17, 2018
Check out the London Blue Devils Free Press article

A year ago, the London Blue Devils won a single game.

It was progress, considering the 0-20 season that preceded it.

But now there are some lofty heights in sight for the local junior B box lacrosse outfit.

“My goal is to be .500 and make the playoffs,” said GM Nev Carson, whose revamped squad begins its regular season Tuesday at Wallaceburg. “Our zone (Windsor, Sarnia, Wallaceburg) is always very strong. We have to show up and be competitive.”

London hasn’t made the playoffs since sporting an 11-9 record in 2013 under different leadership. In the following four seasons, they won just eight of 80 games and consistently surrendered 300 goals (an average of 15 per game).

There are reasons to believe those defensively deficient days are in the rearview mirror.

The Blue Devils fared well at a couple of preseason mini-tournaments in Hagersville and Elora. Sure the six games were a tad shorter than regulation and their record was 1-4-1, but they knocked off Far West Division foe Point Edward and averaged 7.5 goals allowed.

“It was very exciting,” Carson said. “We’ve got improvement in net with Elijah Trudeau, Marquis Stonefish and Joseph Beau, who’s from Waterloo. We had to add some depth because (former London goalie) Owen Dew was drafted in junior A by the Six Nations Arrows.”

Londoner Sean Campbell, the 20-year-old who led the team in scoring the last two summers, has returned and been named captain.

“We have a few veteran leaders like Sean and we want their input,” Carson said. “We’re going to be younger, faster and more skilled. We’re pretty positive with the way things are right now. Numbers at practice have been very good. We have a lot of kids from London, Komoka, Southwold, and our midget program is really strong with two fantastic goalies and good offensive and transition guys.

“We have them to call up if we ever need them down the road.”

Carson made a handful of moves with Windsor and Six Nations to bolster the roster through conditional one-year releases. Former Brampton intermediate Aiden Jack was also brought on board.

This season, the Blue Devils will operate out of a new home — Lambeth Arena — while Nichols Arena undergoes renovations. The first home game is Thursday at 8 p.m.

“We’re hoping for a good crowd to come out and watch this team,” Carson said. “We’re playing Windsor (defending division champion Clippers) right off the hop, so that’s good because we’ll see how good we really are.”

BLUE DEVILS LACROSSE

2018 home schedule; games at Lambeth Arena

Thursday: vs Windsor, 8 p.m.

Wednesday, April 25: vs. Six Nations, 8 p.m.

Tuesday, May 8: vs. Pt. Edward, 8 p.m.

Thursday, May 10: vs. Wallaceburg, 8 p.m.

Tuesday, May 15: vs. Wallaceburg, 8 p.m.

Thursday, May 17: vs. Windsor, 8 p.m.

Sunday, June 3: vs. Welland, 2 p.m.

Thursday, June 7: vs. Elora, 8 p.m.

Friday, June 15: vs. St. Catharines, 8 p.m.

Sunday, June 17: vs. Orangeville, 2 p.m.

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Printed from londonlacrosse.com on Wednesday, September 19, 2018 at 5:12 AM