A huge win for Delta Lacrosse
Islanders capture their first BCJALL title in thrilling fashion Tuesday night.
The Delta Islanders will be heading to the 2016 Minto Cup with a huge wave of momentum.
They are B.C. Junior “A” Lacrosse League champions for the first time in their 15-year history after a thrilling 11-10 double overtime win over the Coquitlam Adanacs on Tuesday night.
The Adanacs entered the best-of-three final as heavy favourites, having won seven consecutive league titles and rolling to a perfect 25-0-0 record. The Islanders served notice with a 9-6 game one victory, then dropped a 11-10 overtime heartbreaker at Sungod Arena.
They returned the favour 48 hours later in front of about 1,500 fans at the Coquitlam Sports Centre with a resilient performance.
Playoff MVP Jon Phillips scored with 1:03 remaining to send the game to overtime and Chase Fraser extended it to sudden-death with 1:07 left in the 10-minute extra period. Nick Jensen finally ended the drama when he finished off an odd man transition play at the 31 second mark.
The Islanders had reached the league finals on two previous occasions, including being swept in last year’s series. Now, they have taken lacrosse where it has never gone before in this community and it’s far from over. The Minto Cup starts Aug. 20 at the Langley Events Centre. Delta will be up against champions from the Ontario and Alberta leagues, along with the Adanacs.
It was one special night for team president Darcy Phillips, who also holds down the same position with Delta’s minor box and field programs.
The Ladner resident is one of many who has put years of volunteer time into the franchise and the sport to get to this point. He also watched his son deliver one huge performance.
“I’m speechless right now. It’s great to see it all come together. Islander pride,” he smiled. “It shows what a lot of hard work and time in the box can do.”
Assistant manager and head coach Greg Rennie grew up playing the game here and wanted nothing more than to show Delta can compete and beat the league heavyweights.
“I have only wanted to win in Ladner. I have never put on a jersey other than Ladner,” he said. “I have had chances to go to other places in junior. I never wanted to leave here and I wanted to do this in this town. It’s more important to me than anything.
“When you have done it once you can do it again. There will be a second time and there will be a third time. This is just a stepping stone (for this franchise).”
MARK BOOTH / AUGUST 10, 2016
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