Johnny Mouradian will be the general manager and David Huntley will be the head coach of Canada’s team for the 2010 world field lacrosse tournament in Manchester, England.
``Johnny and Dave give us the experience and expertise we need to retain the world championship,’’ says executive director Dean French.
Mouradian, from St. Catharines, Ont., and Huntley, a native of Toronto, were teammates on Canada’s victorious 1978 entry and in the ensuing years were on the coaching staff for the tournament, which is held every four years. Canada finally dethroned the United States to win back the title in 2006, when Huntley was an assistant coach.
``Dave won a world championship as a player and as a coach and is the natural selection for the head coach position,’’ says Mouradian, who will be inducted into the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame in November in the field lacrosse player category.
Huntley coached the Toronto Nationals to the Major Lacrosse League pro field title during the summer and Nationals stars such as Brodie Merrill, Dan Dawson and Merrick Thomson are expected to form the backbone of the national team for Manchester. A roster will be finalized after an Oct. 9-12 camp in Toronto.
``It has been a great privilege to be a part of the national team program over the years and, when Johnny asked me to be the head coach for the 2010 team, I was honoured and humbled,’’ Huntley said.
In the pro indoor National Lacrosse League, Mouradian is president and general manager of the Washington Stealth, while Huntley is GM-head coach of the Philadelphia Wings.
Rounding out the national team coaching staff will be former world tournament players Randy Mearns of St. Catharines, Jeff Gombar of Port Moody, B.C., and Chris Sanderson of Orangeville, Ont. Sanderson played the 2006 world team and Mearns and Gombar were assistant coaches.
Mearns, who will be Huntley’s defensive co-ordinator, is head coach at Canisius College in the Buffalo region. Gombar, who will be the bench coach, is head coach of the B.C. under-19 field program. Sanderson, who will be the goalie coach, is an assistant coach with the NLL Wings.
``Chris, Jeff and Randy all played for Canada and all coached with Dave in 2006,’’ says Mouradian. ``Our staff understands the process from team selection to winning the world championship and, let’s face it, it all starts with the staff selecting the right team. We are in a fine position.’’
Paul Stewart of Clarington, Ont., will be the video coach. Stewart does the same job for the Toronto Nationals and he also is scouting co-ordinator for the NLL Wings. He also coached Ireland in the 2007 world indoor tournament.
Assistant GM will be Stuart Brown of Oakville, Ont. Brown is president and GM of the Toronto Nationals and also president of Edge Lacrosse Inc.
Steve Govett of Burnaby, B.C., a former national team player who is president and GM of the NLL’s Colorado Mammoth, will be the liaison between Canada’s team and the international governing body.
Dr. Don Hedges of Coquitlam, B.C., who is president and team physician for the Western Lacrosse Association’s Coquitlam Adanacs, will be Canada’s team doctor.
``I am very pleased that we have been able to assemble such a talented group of coaches and staff members that share our commitment to the Canadian national team program and I am confident that our group will do everything necessary to support our players in their efforts to win the 2010 championship,’’ Huntley said.
The world tournament will be held in Manchester next July.