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Bench Talk / Off The Wire

Here & There in the OLA


By Fred Wallace

 Hi, this is Fred Wallace with " Off the Wire ".


Let's do a quick swing through the Ontario Lacrosse Association today.

In Junior B, the Owen Sound Junior NorthStars were eliminated from the playoffs last weekend, swept aside by the Hamilton Bengals.

In the series, the Bengals proved they were the deeper, better team, surviving an overtime scare in the opener, breaking a tie game wide open midway through Game 2 and then sealing the deal with a convincing win on home floor in Game 3.

It's disappointing in the short term for the Junior NorthStars, but the big picture has plenty of optimism.

First, the Junior Stars don't lose that many bodies going forward and maybe more significantly, if the OLA Junior B Series sticks to the balanced schedule, Owen Sound has the potential to be a playoff team almost annually.

Next, the Bug Juice Senior NorthStars have 2 games this weekend; tomorrow at Waterloo against the Velocity and then Saturday at home to Oakville.

KW is winless on the season and Owen Sound hopes to extend their misery Friday night and move to 9 & 4 in the process.

But then the rubber hits the road

Saturday, Owen Sound will try and conclude a perfect season on home floor when they entertain Oakville and then the Bug Juice Senior Stars finish their season with road games at Brooklin and Six Nations.

Finally, the bigger story in provincial lacrosse is a bad news-good news story.

The good news is that due to concerns about safety for game officials, the refs, games were cancelled last weekend.

That's good news because the issue is being addressed thoroughly by the OLA and may result in sanctions against clubs, including mandated on-site security, forfeiting performance bonds, fines, suspensions,

termination of membership, as well as any criminal or civil liability.

That's stiff, but appropriate in my view.

The bad news comes in two forms; 1) the incidents documented are deplorable and 2) it's taken far too long for the sport to address this at every level and age group.


I'm Fred Wallace

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