TRENTON — The Pictou County Snipers are part of a new Nova Scotia Minor Lacrosse League, launching in time for the 2019 box lacrosse season.
The Snipers have hosted in-person registrations, the last one being on April and began on Monday inviting others to try the sport for free to coincide with online registration.
The other league teams include the Valley Thunder, Truro Bearcats Lacrosse and the Cape Breton Warriors.
League play gets underway May 4, with clubs fielding teams in Novice, Peewee, Bantam and combined Midget/ Intermediate divisions.
“The SMLL’s focus is on growing the game of lacrosse across the province,” says league commissioner Brendon Smithson. “We ran a successful four-club season and championship program for the Peewee division in the last two seasons; this year, we’ve expanded the schedule and really put a full league together.
”Working with the four club presidents through the winter on the SMLL has been a smooth process: we were all pleased with the Peewee trial last season, we face similar geographic and scheduling challenges and we now have a framework to develop the sport for youth playing at all ages and in all areas of Nova Scotia.”
SMLL teams will play an eight- to nine-game season, and host their first full championship weekend in Truro on June 22 and 23. Hosting clubs are also scheduling in a variety of development clinics for athletes, coaches and officials, taking advantage of en masse events to offer skills training, mentorship and opportunities to build camaraderie at all levels within the game.
The sixth Apple Cup, hosted by Valley Thunder in Berwick and Kingston from June 7 to 9, will feature league teams joined by clubs from across Nova Scotia and into New Brunswick for the largest minor box lacrosse tournament in the province.
Lacrosse Nova Scotia is expected to sanction the SMLL, and it will formally register with Nova Scotia Joint Stocks.
“On behalf of Lacrosse Nova Scotia, we are pleased to welcome a new minor lacrosse league into our province,” says Donna Goguen, Lacrosse Nova Scotia board president. “Scotia Minor Lacrosse League is a welcome addition and will be part of the growing infrastructure needed to accommodate future growth of our sport.”
The SMLL membership remains open, as communities across the province rejuvenate or launch youth minor lacrosse programs.
The league will flex its structure and schedule to accommodate teams at any and all divisions, and there is preliminary interest in extending programming into the field lacrosse sector.
Follow the league at smll.ca for more information.