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Dear Prague, Love You To Death

1 - Published April 19, 2013 by in International

On Monday I head over to the Czech Republic (Radotin to be specific!) for the 20th annual Ales Hrebesky Memorial box lacrosse tournament. I will be playing with the 2011 champs, Love You To Death, and I’m quite excited to get on board Scotty Komer’s squad. Never heard of Love You To Death before? Have a listen:

LYTD is the band, AND the team. Cool stuff. LYTD won the AHM in 2011, and took 2012 off. I played last year with the Salt Shakerz. Want to see what 2013 will be like? It will be like 2012, except better, because it’s the 20th Anniversary.

And now for some box gear… what am I bringing over with me? All kinds of stuff, of course.

Some beauty helmet stickers

Some beauty helmet stickers

Deutschland Adler GTG Shirts

Deutschland Adler GTG Shirts

These EvoShield wrist guards are key.

These EvoShield wrist guards are key.

Three different styles. All play and throw the same way. Which to use?

Three different styles. All play and throw the same way. Which to use?

LYTD uniforms for 2013.

The scene in 2012. Pure awesomeness.

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LYTD uniforms for 2013.

2013 Tournament Team Overview

Pool A – Dublin Tropics (Ireland), Pioneers (Canada), Polish Eagles

Dublin were the Riggers last year. Now they’re pulling a Jackie Moon. Will that be enough to knock off the Pioneers, who look like an early Group A favorite? This is the Polish Eagles’ first trip to Prague, and they should be athletic and tough.

Pool B – SK Jižní Mêsto (Czech), London Knights (England), Bundeswher (Germany)

All three of these squads should be solid, with SKJM the early favorite. London has been improving as English box lacrosse grows, and Bundeswher has youth and passion and has been training with some of the DALC guys. I like SKJM, but it could be tight in Pool B.

Pool C – Love You To Death (Canada), TJ Malešice (Czech), Vienna Monarchs (Austria)

LYTD has to be the favorite in this group (they were 2011 champs) but TJM is no slouch. TJM has multiple Czech national team players and beat the Salt Shakerz last year. Vienna will be improved, and have more depth than in year’s past, and can not be overlooked.

Pool D – Nova Scotia Privateers (Canada), Deutschland Adler (Germany), LCC Wolves (Czech)

Nova Scotia made some waves last year, and will be very competitive again. Deuthschland Adler won the ELL this past year, and has to be an early favorite due to their skill and team play. LCC Wolves is LCC Radotin’s team of youngsters, and these cats can ball. Don’t let their age fool you! This is easily the Group of DEATH. Someone good will not emerge. It’s science.

An interesting note about the LCC Wolves is that they picked up a new player, Alexia Deis, and SHE will be the first female runner (non-goalie) in AHM tournament history. Very cool, and something worth paying attention to.

Pool E – LCC Radotin (Czech), Silver Birch Leafs (Finland), Glasgow Clydesiders (Scotland)

LCC Radotin is the home side, and they made it to the finals last year, where they fell to the Boston Megamen. They are the easy favorite in Pool E. The Sliver Birch Leafs are out of Canada and if you haven’t read their mission statement, you need to. Glasgow is a Scottish club, and they are a first year entrant. Expect some size and toughness. There are over 50 people playing box in Scotland now. Did you know that?

Pool F – Green Gaels (Canada), Bratislava Bats (Slovakia)

Pool F only has two teams, as the 20th anniversary tourney has 20 teams playing. This means one of the seven groups only has two teams. Do the math. The Green Gaels and Bratislava are both quite good. To be honest, I can’t pick a favorite here. Should be epic.

Pool G – Boston Megamen (USA), Slavia Praha (Czech), Spartiates/Goldstar (France/Israel)

Boston won it all in 2012, and they bring back a stellar core and some big new names. They are probably the early favorite to be champs as well. Slavia Praha is no joke, and it could make for a good Pool game. Spartiates/Goldstar is new, and has members from France and Israel. Welcome to the tourney: have fun playing Boston!

Overall, the tournament is looking stacked with talent. There are some firsts (Polish team, Israeli players, woman runner) and plenty of excitement.

Alex Scriffiano (who is playing for Boston) will be writing daily updates from Radotin, and I’ll be sending in photos and some video. Stay tuned. It’s going to epic. Always is!