Athletics rally past Lakers
Oliver Vanyo has finally landed his dream job.
The 19-year-old St. Catharines native has been handed the starting goaltending job for the St. Catharines WMKL Athletics, a position he has coveted for some time.
“My goal is always to play lacrosse at the highest level I can play at,” Vanyo said. “For me, that was St. Catharines junior A box. This where I want to be, it’s where it has to be.”
A’s head coach Steve Toll indicated recently the job was Vanyo’s to lose, something the Governor Simcoe graduate appreciated.
“It makes me feel really good. It’s a big confidence booster, especially last year being along for the ride and watching how it goes. That I’m finally getting in and being able to do it, it’s exciting.
“It’s awesome. I’m ready to do it and ready to go.”
Vanyo isn’t about the take the job for granted, however. Ty Wilson has been brought in as a backup and Toll said he wouldn’t hesitate to use Wilson should the need arise.
“There’s no days off when you’re the starting goalie. I just have to come in every day and do my job and give the best I can to keep the position,” Vanyo said.
Vanyo got into a handle of games for the A’s last season as backup to Austin Paddy.
“Looking at Paddy and seeing the routine, seeing everything he does, the preparation it takes to go, watching that first hand, it was definitely a big help,” he said.
Vanyo quickly noticed the calibre of junior A.
“Just the speed, it’s a different game,” he said. “There are no bad players in this league, no bad teams. The speed of the ball and the ability of the other players is really up there. It’s a big difference.”
Vanyo has committed to Lindenwood University in St. Louis for the fall and is excited to begin that chapter.
“As soon as the season is done I’ll make my way down and start the school year there,” he said. “I think it’s going to be a tremendous help. It will be a big culture change going to the States.”
For now, Vanyo is doing a teaching co-op with A’s assistant coach Ken Millin at Prince Phillip Public School in St. Catharines.
Vanyo, who had a strong showing as the A’s opened the Ontario Junior Lacrosse League regular season with a win in Six Nations Monday, kicked out 35 shots as the A’s topped the Peterborough Lakers 14-8 Wednesday night in their regular season home opener at Canada Games Park.
The A’s broke open a close game, exploding for eight goals in the third.
A’s 14 Lakers 8
WMKL Player of the Game: A’s forward Tye Steenhuis with three goals and five points.
For the St. Catharines Athletics: Steenhuis 3; Gavin Howard 3; Ethan Fisher 2; Christian LeFeuvre; Cameron Pack, Keaton Zavitz; Logan Fletcher, Jackson Webster, Julian Race.
For the Peterborough Lakers: Ben Trumble 2; Connor Gorman, Matthew Drimmie, Zack Thompson, Landon Sinfield, Adam Thistlethwaite, Alex Hicks.
On deck: At Kitchener-Waterloo Friday and Oakville Saturday. Home to Burlington Wednesday, May 31.
Dear reader. If you liked this story or one of the 5,000 other stories found on our website, please consider hitting the Support Us button on the right-hand side of our home page and making a PayPal contribution to our website. Your support would be much appreciated. If you are a business owner, please consider advertising on our site. Our rates are reasonable and we provide plenty of exposure for your business. Contact email@example.com for more information.