Timbermen bolster back end at draft

The Nanaimo Timbermen senior A lacrosse club added 16 prospects last Wednesday at the WLA Draft in Vancouver.

The Nanaimo Timbermen made a bunch of top-10 picks and then kept picking the rest of the night, well into the late rounds.

The city’s senior A Western Lacrosse Association club added 16 prospects last Wednesday at the WLA Draft in Vancouver.

Nanaimo had four top-10 selections and used them on defenders Jordan Gilles and Taylor Stuart and then forwards Chase McIntyre and Jordan Cunningham.

“We thought we did well,” said Earl Nicholson, general manager of the Timbermen. “We addressed some areas that we were looking to address.”

Nanaimo’s top three choices are all guys from the mainland, but Timbermen brass contacted all of them prior to draft day and received indications they would play on the Island.

Gilles, 5-foot-11, 175 pounds, played junior with the Delta Islanders and is a transition defender who is strong on loose balls. He is a member of the NLL’s Colorado Mammoth.

“He’s got a good head on his shoulders for seeing the floor and moving the ball,” Nicholson said. “He’s the type of player that I think fits the way the game is going. You’ve got to get some offence from the back and get it started at the back.”

Stuart, 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, more of a defensive defender, spent four seasons with the junior A Coquitlam Adanacs.

McIntyre and Cunningham are both right-handed forwards, which the T-men were seeking. McIntyre is a 6-foot-5, 215 pounder who had 47 points last season with the junior Adanacs.

“He’s got good skills,” Nicholson said. “A good outside shot and he’s not afraid to go to the net. He’ll give us some size up front there.”

Cunningham played junior B last season in Saanich but already has senior A experience with the Victoria Shamrocks.

The Timbermen chose Jake Cullen in the second round. Cullen played up front with the junior A Shamrocks but the T-men envision him as a transition guy with his ability to run the floor.

In the third round, the T-men went with two Nanaimo juniors, Brett Hawrys and Cole Kryworuchka. Hawrys scored more than 100 goals over his three seasons of junior and the Timbermen see the 5-foot-10, 180 pounder as a versatile addition.

“We’re going to have a look at him as a tranny because he’s such a hound for the ball and you’ve got to get some offence from back there and I think we can get that from Brett,” said the GM.

Nanaimo is also excited about its top pick in the fourth round, Bradley Breadon, a 6-foot-4, 200 pounder whom Nicholson described as “big, nasty” and someone who “plays with an edge.”

Other picks by the senior A Timbermen included Nanaimo junior graduates Devan Smith, Jeremy Roe, Jordan Kuziek, Cody Short and Nick Kapusty, as well as Max Fredrickson, Chris Kasper and Matt Benedict.

Nicholson said the Timbermen wanted to add a lot of depth at the draft because they felt it was a strong draft, and also because they hope having a lot of players in the mix will lead to a good, competitive training camp this spring.

The Timbermen will open camp in April and season starts in May.