Snipers reload with draft talent

by Scott Ludwig

2019 was not a season the Six Nations Snipers would like to repeat. The team dropped their first three games and finished with a 5-9 record - eight of those losses by one or two goals. Their playoff run ended quickly with a quarterfinal loss to Paris.

After a 9-5 first season in 2017 the Snipers have had back-to-back 5-9 seasons. Six Nations has yet to win a playoff game being eliminated in the first round three years straight.

Yet the mood in the ILA locker room is an optimistic one. Head coach Darcy Powless hopes to turn those close losses into wins in 2020. "We competed in every game last season. We lost a lot of one and two goal games‎. I'm hoping we come out on the winning sides of those games this season."

Powless expects the roster to look much different than last season with a 50/50 mix of veterans and newcomers. Many of those new faces will be a product of the ALL Draft, where Six Nations selected nine players who were also taken in the National Lacrosse League Entry Draft in September.

"I'm pleased with our draft picks," said Powless. "They will fit in well. We look forward to the NLL guys we drafted to bring their NLL camp experience to our camp."

Five of the drafted played in the Ontario Junior A Lacrosse League in 2019. Devyn Mayea (6'4" 210 lbs) is a big defender who posted 32 points for the Burlington Chiefs.

Another five draftees competed in the always strong Ontario Junior B Lacrosse League last summer. Tyler Armstrong, Blaze White and Nonkon Thompson all had stellar seasons with the Akwesasne Indians. White finished fourth in league scoring with 106 points in 20 regular season games, then added 87 points in 16 playoff games. Armstrong (24 points) and Thompson (43 points) led the Indians defence to an undefeated regular season.

The Snipers used their top selection in the ALL Draft on Tye Argent of the Hamilton Bengals. Argent posted huge numbers (39 goals, 57 assists) for the Bengals in 2019 finishing with 10th among OJBLL scoring leaders. The 20-year old helped Hamilton to reach the Western Conference finals adding eight goals and 25 assists in nine games.

"Argent pretty much sums up what we want our team to be; he's fast, creative, young, and exciting to watch."

Six Nations Snipers 2019 Draft results

1 Tye Argent, Hamilton Bengals Jr. B

3 Bradley Fannell, St. Catharines Athletics Jr. A (Colorado Mammoth 2019 6th Round selection)

4 Bradley Voight, Syracuse/Dallas Rattlers (Rochester Knighthawks 2019 4th Round selection)

5 Daylen Hill, Six Nations Rebels Jr. B (New York Riptide 2019 5th Round selection)

6 Tyler Armstrong, Akwesasne Indians Jr. B

7 Dylan Sprentz, Burlington Chiefs Jr. A

8 Devyn Mayea, Burlington Chiefs Jr. A (San Diego Seals 2019 2nd Round selection)

9 Blaze White, Akwesasne Indians Jr. B

10 Dustyn Pratt, Orangeville Northmen Jr. A (Rochester Knighthawks 2019 2nd Round selection)

11 Matthew Sykes, Mimico Mountaineers Jr. A (San Diego Seals 2019 2nd Round selection)

12 Nonkon Thompson, Akwesasne Indians Jr. B (Halifax Thunderbirds 2019 3rd Round selection)

13 Russ Oakes, Onondaga CC/Akwesasne Bucks Sr. B (San Diego Seals 2019 6th Round selection)

14 Kason Tarbell, Cornell (Georgia Swarm 1st Round selection)

15 Jordan Mike