Development First: Lacrosse Programme Reaching New Heights

It’s been said that good things come in threes, and the St. Michael’s College School (SMCS) Blue Gaels Lacrosse programme can certainly attest to that after the last six weeks.

“It has been an exhilarating run of triumphs and opportunities for both alumni and current student-athletes,” says Angus Dineley, coach of the Varsity Blue Gaels Lacrosse team. “It speaks to our focus on development at every level of our programme.”

The St. Michael's College School Varsity Blue Gaels Lacrosse team after winning the 2018 CISAA Championship.

ALUMNUS CROWNED MINTO CUP CHAMPION

The good news began in Langley, British Columbia at the 2019 Minto Cup, where Jonathan Donville ’16 and his Orangeville Jr. A Northmen captured the Minto Cup, the junior men’s box lacrosse national championship. In addition to helping his team to a perfect tournament record, Jonathan was also named Minto MVP after leading the tournament in scoring. A two-year captain, and two-time MVP for the Blue Gaels, Donville now returns to Cornell University for his junior year with the Big Red.

Jonathan Donville '16 playing lacrosse for the St. Michael's College School Varsity Blue Gaels Lacrosse team.

“Jonathan was the consummate student-athlete and leader while at SMCS,” Coach Dineley reflects. “It’s wonderful to see his hard work pay off in his final year of junior lacrosse.”

GRADS DRAFTED TO THE PROS

The good news kept on coming for the programme as a trio of alumni heard their names called at the National Lacrosse League (NLL) entry draft on September 17 in Philadelphia, PA.

Tyson Gibson '14, Warren Jeffrey '15, and Tanner Thomson '14 at the National Lacrosse League 2019 draft.

Tyson Gibson ’14 was selected first overall by the New York Riptide. A dominant two-way midfielder at SMCS, Tyson followed up an incredible collegiate career at Robert Morris University with an equally impressive summer playoff with the Sr. A Victoria Shamrocks. Gibson led the Shamrocks in scoring during the 2019 Mann Cup, coming up just short in a bid for a national title. 

Gibson was followed by Warren Jeffrey ’15, selected with the sixth overall pick by the Colorado Mammoth. A lock-down defender, Jeffrey followed up his stellar lacrosse career at SMCS with four impressive seasons with the University of Vermont. In addition to his NLL selection, Warren just completed his rookie season with the Chesapeake Bayhawks, who won the Major League Lacrosse Championship in 2019. 

Finally, the Saskatchewan Rush used their first-round pick to select Tanner Thomson ’14 sixteenth overall. One of the best playmakers to come out of SMCS, Thomson also had an outstanding collegiate career with Marquette University and led his Mimico Jr. A teams to some of their greatest successes. Thomson is also the eldest of four brothers, Keaton ’16, Hudson ’19, and Finlay ’21, all of whom have been, or still are, key contributors to the Blue Gaels’ programme. 

“Tyson, Warren, and Tanner will all be impact players for their teams,” adds Dineley. “It’s a testament to their commitment to seeing them all chosen in the first round, and an affirmation of the potential they displayed and developed when wearing the double blue.”

NATIONAL TEAM PROSPECTS

The third piece of news came from Team Canada’s U19 entry at the 2020 FIL World Championships as ten SMCS alumni and current students were named to the 73-man tryout roster in the hopes of representing Canada at the world championships in Limerick, Ireland. Best wishes to the following young men have who have earned the opportunity: Carter Begley ’19, Andrew Dalton ’19, Liam Ferris ’19, Rory Graham ’19, Daniel May ’19, Thomas McConvey ’18, Johnathan Peshko ’19, Eddie Qu ’20, Jakson Raposo ’19, and Hudson Thomson ’19. 

The coaching staff, and the entire St. Michael’s College School family, would like to congratulate all of these wonderful ambassadors of the Blue Gaels’ programme and SMCS on their well-deserved success.