Brennan Stothers Grade 12, Claremont Secondary School
Signature sports moment of 2012: I have had a few awesome moments in sports but the most recent moment was on November 15, 2012 when I signed my National Letter of Intent to play NCAA Men’s Field Lacrosse at Ohio Valley University starting in the fall of 2013. Another huge moment for me was when I made the Intermediate A Shamrocks team in the spring of 2012. I have wanted to wear the green and white since I was five years old so that was a big moment for me and my family.
Coach’s words of wisdom: My coaches have been Dale Nordstrom (my dad) and Josh Van Wieren. They have been huge influences on me over the years. They both told me to always shoot for the moon because if I pushed myself to always give it 110 % then I would be successful in whatever I did. They were always out there (mostly in the pouring rain and freezing cold) pushing me and my teammates to give it all we had. Their encouragement on the sidelines gave me the will to strive to do my best. They know so much about lacrosse — not just the stuff that is in the coaching manual, but the stuff you would only know from playing at a high level (which they both did). Without their knowledge, I don’t think I would be where I am today.
Biggest obstacle to overcome: The biggest obstacle that I have had to overcome has been the cost associated with competing at a high level. It is very expensive to travel all over the place to play. My entire extended family has been beside me the entire time with the financial help that I have needed. Without my family there to help me, I would not be able to compete at such a high level. Family is one of the most important things for me. They have had and will always have my back. They are the best family anyone could ask for and for the times that I felt too tired to give it 110 %, all I had to do was think of my family and how they would want me to give it my all and that was enough to push me to the next level and to get the job done.
Best teammate ever: The teammates who have had the biggest influence on me have been Ryan Taylor and TJ Prokop. They are good friends and excellent teammates. We have played together since we were little guys. They are loyal friends who have always had my back. We have played for so long we know each other’s style of play and it feels effortless on the field. TJ is one of the best goalies out there and Ryan never stops going. I go to Claremont with Ryan and we also played on the Shamrocks together. He is a solid player and I never get tired of watching him evolve. He is extraordinary.
Benefits of being in high-level sports: The benefits of playing at a high level are endless. I feel they have shaped who I have become so far. I have a competitive nature as it is so my sports have helped me channel that energy in a good way. I have learned to win with grace and lose with dignity. Every time I play, I try to critically reflect on what I can do better next time. I think this is what life is all about really. Being able to roll with the punches and to learn from your mistakes and successes. Teamwork towards a common goal is also a big part of what I picture adult life to be like. I think I might be off to a good start.
Playing at a high level has given me the opportunity to meet, be coached by and to play with and against so many great people from all over North America. I have also been given a scholarship to play NCAA lacrosse in the U.S.A. while earning my degree. Without the love and support of my family and friends I don’t think I would be in the position I am in now.