WALL West Bronze Game

by Savanna Smith

On February 10th, 2024, the Arena Lacrosse League West Women's held their Cherlyn Billy Memorial Championship games at the Langley Field House; on the unceeded Traditional Territory of the Kwantlen, Katzie, Semiahmoo, and Matsqui First Nations. This was the second season that the Cherlyn Billy Memorial Championship took place.  

The Turtles have had a nail bitter of a season, beating the Bears on Jan 27th with seconds to spare. This resulted in the NLL standing tie breaker which went into 8 rounds. With the Bears beating the Turtles for second place by 3 overall league goals. They were a crowed favorite with many fans carrying signs, and cheering on their favorite players. Truly inspiring to see the impact these women are having on the next generation of players. The Turtles were coached by an all father team with Russ Aunger, Chad Hanson and Derek Murrell bringing over 30 years of lacrosse to the league. 

The Hawks were coached by an all father coaching staff. Bruce Hollingstead, Les Schmidt and Scott Mackenzie brought over 20 years of lacrosse to the league. The Hawks also had three sister playing together for the first time with Skylar, Raegan and Rylee Mackenzie. They are the only team to have a mother and daughter playing together. With Jennie and Amber Grais who played their second year together in WALL. The Hawks were the only team in the league to have a player having to be back up for a goalie after an ejection took place. They are also the only team to have changed final seedings in the league from their 2022-2023 season. 

Game two was the Hawks (forth place team) vs the Turtles (third place team), that started at 3:30 pm. The Hawks had #1 Ainslee Rushton as their goalie all game; due to injury of Cloe Etinne. Ainslee Rushton had a total off 41 saves. The Turtles started #00 Julia Friesen for the first two quarters with a total off 19 saves. #1 Candace McDole played the final two quarters with a total off 20 saves. 

Turtles team photo 2023-2024

These two teams battled it out all game, with players answering each other back. The first goal was scored by the Hawks by #19 Savanna Smith at 12:36 in the first quarter and # 20 Lisa Mullan scoring their second goal. The Turtles answered back with three goals in the first quarter scored by #6 Courtney Hanson and two goals by #8 Nicole Panke.

In the second quarter the Hawks would score two goals one by #8 Raegan Mackenzie and the second goal by #19 Savanna Smith. The Turtles would tie the game with a goal by # 2 Grace Murrell. 

Hawks team photo 2023-2024

Both teams would score in the third quarter. The first goal by #19 Savanna Smith at 12:30 and the Turtles would answer back with a goal by #7 Morgan Sherley at 12:02. The Turtles would have #18 Lexy Steveston and a second by # 7 Morgan Sherley. The Hawks would have #11 Breanna Hollingstead score in the third. The Hawks would score at 4:44 left in the fourth quarter by #11 Breanna Hollingstead would tie it up.

There would be one quarter of 15 minutes of play sudden victory. The Hawks would win the game after #13 Leah Catton scored the game winning goal at 14:35 into over time. 

We look forward to seeing these two teams in the 2024-2025 season!