VIU values, celebrates, and supports Indigenous culture. Despite this focus, lacrosse—Canada’s national sport, rooted in Indigenous history—has never found a home underneath the Mariners crest. Jesse Kemp, the Career and Work Integrated Learning Coordinator at VIU and an avid lacrosse player, wants to be the driving force behind a team’s creation.

Lacrosse has changed dramatically since its inception. The traditional wooden stick has been replaced with plastic and titanium, but wooden sticks still hold the image of the original Iroquois players who wielded them centuries ago.

Today five devoted players gather weekly at John Barsby’s outdoor lacrosse box as Mariners. All of these players come from different heritages and histories, but they each carry the same idea: to be the players behind VIU’s first lacrosse team.

Sadly, the five players committed are not enough for a team. At least ten players are required, and that is if the team doesn’t have any spares. For the team to have any form of success for a September season, it needs more support. The team is currently listed as recreational but wants enough interest for a Fall 2019 rookie season. Jesse Kemp stated that he wishes to “develop [the team] organically, but the hope is that it will soon be competitive provincially.”

In order for the team to be competitive, it needs the support of more players and of community members. If any current or future VIU students wish to play for the team, they can contact Kemp at