Players of the Stettler Midget Thunder Lacrosse team scrum against each other in practice at the Stettler Recreation Centre

Players of the Stettler Midget Thunder Lacrosse team scrum against each other in practice at the Stettler Recreation Centre

Stettler Thunder underway as lacrosse returns for another season

While it wasn't an auspicious start of the season for the Stettler Thunder in the way of winning, players had a ton of fun.

While it wasn’t an auspicious start of the season for the Stettler Thunder in the way of winning, players of the teams in Red Deer this past Saturday, April 9, had a ton of fun, the Stettler Lacrosse league’s vice-president said.

Kim Smyth said that teams from all the leagues — mini-tykes to midgets — went to Red Deer for the annual Eye Opener weekend of games, the traditional start of the lacrosse season for central Alberta. While not a tournament per-se, all the games are held in Red Deer, giving the whole league a venue on which to descend.

Stettler teams played against counterparts from Red Deer, with the midget and bantam teams losing to Red Deer 9-4, and the novice and peewee teams losing to Red Deer 6-3, Smyth said.

While the teams have already been formed in Stettler, the league has until May 11 to accept new registrations. With small teams for bantam and novice categories, more players are welcome, Smyth noted.

With the season now underway, there’ll be games every weekend except for this coming weekend, which will be devoted to a coaching clinic for the league’s coaches. The following weekend, Stettler will be hosting its annual Tykes Festival on Saturday, April 23 at Stettler’s Red Rink.

On Friday, April 22, the Novice Thunder will take on Sylvan Lake beginning at 6 p.m., followed by the Peewee Thunder taking on Olds at 7 p.m.

The next day, while the festival takes place on the Red Rink, the blue rink will see the Novice Thunder play at 11 a.m., the Peewee Thunder play at 12 p.m., the Bantam Thunder at 1:30 p.m. and the Midget Thunder at 3 p.m. The teams will be playing against Innisfail.

There are no games on Sunday, April 24, but on Monday night, the Bantam Thunder will be heading to Red Deer to play against Sylvan Lake. Sylvan Lake is without a venue this year, so Sylvan Lake games will be played in Red Deer, Smyth said.