Whales Lax & CCYL Player Make Memories
The South Sound Summer Slam was a memorable weekend for both the Whales Lacrosse Club and CCYL player Kabe Clark. With endless support from Whales Lax, Charm City Youth Lax and Adrenaline, Kabe and his father Derrick made the trek from Baltimore to Seattle for the tournament.
Kabe and Derrick’s trip out West kicked off with an airport pick up from the “Whales Uber”. The “Whales Uber” was assembled by Anne Ryan, one of the team parents and the mother of Jimmy who started Whales Lax. She organized a group of volunteers to help transport the Clarks for the weekend, giving them a chance to meet the families and players associated with the program. “Out of the great families, I would like to specifically thank the Smith family, Keesee family, Slapper family and Sullivan family. These are the families that carted Kabe and I around at some point this weekend and they were all good company and have great kids. As far as the Ryan Family is concerned I’m not sure what to say other than they made us feel like family and that is a big deal to us,” said Derrick, Kabe’s father in a post event follow up. Day one continued with a meet and greet for the players and parents as well as a casual practice where the players received their swag bags loaded with gear, including Darth Cader jackets, Strong4Sam/Whales T-shirts and GripRX. Additional items included phone wallets, wristbands and Adrenaline socks. The kids were pumped with all the gear and wore the jackets all weekend, despite the 90 degree weather!
Later that evening, Sam Taylor and his family came and spoke at the team dinner. They started off by thanking everyone for all their support and for helping raise over $21,000! They went on to tell the story of the Strong4Sam Foundation, a non-profit started by Sam’s family that forwards all donations to the brain tumor cancer research division of Fred Hutch where Sam’s doctor works. Dr. Olson and his team have had major breakthroughs in recent years, including the invention of “tumor paint”, a technique that makes tumors glow so no good tissue is removed during surgery. Dr. Olson and his team are passionate about finding a cure and share all of their findings with anyone who requests it. The Taylors’ finished up by showing the boys a ten minute slideshow about the history of Whales Lax, which gave them a clear idea of why they were playing and what Whales Lacrosse is all about.
Both teams played at a high level all weekend, going undefeated and taking home the championship in their respective divisions. Pod 9 and 10 coasted into the playoffs where they matched up against some elite clubs. Pod 10 beat a strong 3d 2022 Oregon team, while Pod 9 went into a nerve-wracking OT situation before they won with a sweet no-look assist. Kabe was a major contributor for the Whales, netting multiple goals and dishing out countless assists thoughout the weekend. The coaches and parents described Kabe as a smart and unselfish player, while the kids called him the GOAT. His teammates were not only impressed with his play on the field, but they also loved his kind and fun-loving personality off the field.
After taking home the championships, Kabe and Derrick went on a tour of Seattle. Their first stop was the famous Pike’s Market where they enjoyed a casual dinner and saw the original Starbucks. The Clarks also went to the Space Needle and took photos at the top. Both Kabe and his father had a blast on their sightseeing tour and couldn’t be more thankful for everyone involved in making this happen. “Thanks [to all involved] for your support in making our trek from Baltimore to Seattle possible. We’d also like to thank Kyle Harrison for his role in providing this awesome opportunity for Kabran and being the excellent role model that he is,” Derrick Clark.
Check out some great photos from the weekend! Adrenaline loved being apart of this unforgettable experience. A huge shoutout to Whales Lacrosse, Charm City Youth Lacrosse and Kyle Harrison for involving us to turn this idea into reality. Good luck in your future lacrosse endeavors, Kabe. We’ll be watching out for you!