North of the Border with Rick Bezuidenhout (Campbell River, BC / Timberline Secondary) Junior, Midfield
For you what’s the best part of being an SFU Clansman?
The best part about being a Clansman is the brotherhood. We are together as a team seven days a week, through snow, sleet, hail, and rain; through midterms, presentations, papers, and finals; at the gym, study-hall, and everything in between. Week in week out, the unity is pervasive and resilient, always being tested, but always breaking through. You can bet every bill and penny in the world that there is not another team in the MCLA more closely knit, or more ready to die for one another. We have the scars to prove it, and the trophies too. But the amity extends far beyond the nineteen guys on the team. You know you’re not playing high school ball anymore when the entire campus has got your back, coming alive and electric every time the net ripples. That’s brotherhood. That’s SFU lacrosse.
It’s midweek during the season so you’re in between weekend games. Tell us about a day in the life of YOU. What do you do? Where do you go (classes, places, practices, movies, etc)? Who are you with (friends, girlfriend, teammates, parents)? What do you think about? What do you watch or listen to?
Its midweek, midseason: in that heartbeat between the fading memories of Colorado State and the visualizations and revisualizations of Colorado, ranked 10 notches ahead of us in the polls. We’ve practiced three times this week, worked out twice, and I haven’t even mentioned the stationary bike sessions. Relaxation is fleeting. Since Sunday morning, I’ve written over 4000 words in papers, racked my brain over a Tuesday Archaeology exam, and I now find myself sitting on the bus, pointing due south, and way behind in readings. Lacrosse has shotgun, and life sits restless in the back seat, arms raised and fearful. But honestly, I don’t mind. Life is better when the pedal is reaching the plastic past the metal. It’s exciting when everyone around you is on the same high, a cloud 9 reserved only for laxers.
Tell us about your pregame rituals.
Vancouver is one of those cities that put everything into perspective. My pre-home-game ritual is a silent, reflective drive to the field. The proverbial “Lax is War” is an anthem in this city. I only crank the tunes upon arrival at the field. Routine is key: pasta the night before, a good breakfast and shake in the morning, and a variety of granola bars leading up to the game. The two-litre water bottle might as well be duct-taped to my hand. Our Harrow sponsorship makes us look good, but it’s up to ourselves to inject the proper fuels to play good. On the road, you can find me concentrating on studies while simultaneously drawing out plays and midfield rotations. The headphones are always in and blaring Arcade Fire, The Black Keys, Bob Marley, Pinback, Dead Prez, Kanye West, Kings of Leon, Chili Peppers, Slipnot, System, The Tragically Hip, Vampire Weekend, and Rise Against, to name but just a few.
What are your thoughts on the upcoming game against Colorado?
The University of Colorado may be from Boulder, but they’re merely just a stepping stone in an arduous journey of affirmations. Last week, we proved to the league that we can hang with the MCLA elite, only losing to the #3 Colorado State Rams by two in a well-matched, hard-fought game. This Friday’s game against the Buffs will strain both the mental and physical aspects of our play, but I believe we are in a position to walk away victorious. As MCLA fans, you can expect us to make a stand of vengeance; the last meeting blowout between us will not go without justice. A 2-4 record (4 losses coming against top ranked opponents) is not good enough for SFU Lacrosse’s high standard, and this week, we aim to make the next affirmation.
What do you do off the field? What does SFU offer that no other school offers? Any unique traditions on campus or within the lacrosse team?
I mentioned in passing that our roster only consists of nineteen players. This may be shocking from an international perspective, but when it comes down to it, it’s our best 10 against their best 10, and that proves to be the definitive underpinning of our success. The other nine guys on the sidelines, the “spares,” might as well be synonymous with “starters” because after that first whistle blows, the distinction becomes blurred, and we unite on the field of play together as a team. No one is left out of the fray. I personally take pride in our small roster size and the omnipresence of underclassmen because time and time again, we prove that inexperience is just a phase. Last year we were 1-6 at one point, and then we went to the Semi-finals of the National Championship. The end of the season is where we find our stride.