A mammoth opportunity
Jeff Wittig is primed to make the move to the National Lacrosse League.
The 21-year-old St. Catharines native recently agreed to a two-year contract with the Colorado Mammoth.
Wittig was recommended by Whitby coach Shawn Williams, who is the offensive co-ordinator for the Mammoth.
“Shawn and I talked and then I got a call with an offer of a contract and I accepted it,” Wittig said. “It was awesome. It felt really good. I was really happy. Colorado has a great team and a good coach and I’m pretty excited to get started.”
Wittig plans to do all he can to get ready for training camp. The Mammoth open the regular season Dec. 1 at home to the Calgary Roughnecks.
“(I plan to) be in the gym every day and keep a stick in my hand,” he said. “It’s pretty much a grind for the next two months until November when I get down there and start running with the team.”
Wittig was selected by Vancouver in last year’s NLL draft and played in an exhibition game for the Stealth before being released.
“It was awesome, just getting to play at that level,” he said. “I think it helped my game overall. I was able to see things differently on the floor. It’s a huge learning curve.”
Wittig enjoyed a strong final season of junior with the St. Catharines Athletics, finishing third in regular season scoring with 24 goals and 58 points and second in playoff scoring with 16 points in eight games.
“I think I’ve matured as a player and I’ve found new ways to play,” he said. “I’ll have to listen to what other people say and I’m sure the older players on the team will help me out.”
A’s general manager Jeff Chcoski is thrilled to see Wittig get an opportunity to turn pro.
“This is a great opportunity for Jeff,” Chcoski said. “He has earned it. He is a big game player and if he works hard will be able to play at the pro level.
“Jeff did everything we asked of him and we awarded him with the leadership award for our team this season. That says something considering the group of players we had in our room.”
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