6 February 2020
New Westminster, BC – Draft day trade brings Drew Belgrave back to the Bellies.
Another New Westminster boy is coming back to play for his home team.
In his first big move as the Senior A Salmonbellies new GM, Ray Porcellato is bringing Drew Belgrave back home. Belgrave was a standout player in New Westminster’s minor and junior systems for 10 years, and he was a standout call up to play in the senior team’s 2017 Mann Cup bid. Belgrave was drafted by the Nanaimo Timbermen in 2018, where he has played for the last two seasons.
In order to bring him back to New Westminster, the Bellies traded away Ethan Ticehurst, moments after acquiring him with a compensatory pick. Also going to Nanaimo were the Bellies’ 2nd round pick in this draft (12th overall) and again in 2021. But there is no doubt Porcellato feels New Westminster got a solid deal. “Anytime you can add a player of Drew's calibre to your D gate,you do it!” he explained.
Belgrave is just as thrilled by the move. “My first reaction is that I am relieved because I won’t have to travel as much as I have in the last two years,” said Belgrave. “But the biggest thing for me is getting a chance to play at Queens Park Arena again. I spent the last 10 years of my minor career there, the wearing the red, white and blue and playing on that wooden floor means a lot to me.”
Belgrave credits his lacrosse success to long-time junior coach, Warren Goss, and he says that the same tradition of pride and excellence exists in the Senior A dressing room. He fondly recalls being welcomed into the fold in the 2017 Mann Cup. “They took me in right away. Logan Schuss saw that my arm pads were falling apart, and immediately tossed me a brand-new pair. Immediately, I felt like I fit in with the team and that we could perform at a high-level.”
Belgrave is known as one of most intense players in lacrosse. He is a multi-sport athlete, as comfortable on the football field as he is on the lacrosse floor. He lives for the big hit and loves to cause turnovers. He’s also known as a great transition player who can score when called upon to do so. It’s not just something he does in the summertime. Belgrave is also a standout professional player, suiting up for San Diego Seals during the National Lacrosse League season. Speaking about Belgrave’s NLL performance, Porcellato said, “In a league of amazing athletes he stands out, his athleticism and determination are very impressive. He's got a big engine and is comfortable matching up and shutting down world class players.”
Belgrave is looking forward to bringing that intensity to Queens Park arena, especially alongside players like Mike Messenger. “I look forward to working with him. We’re like a double-edged sword with speed and power. I think we’re a dangerous combination,” says Belgrave.
If Bellies’ President Paul Horn has his way, this move will be the start of a trend. “New Westminster is a true community team. If we want to live up to the legacy of the last 131 years, we need to show our young and developing players that we are going to do what we can to keep them in a Bellies jersey. Our aim is to make this community proud, and Drew is a vital ingredient in helping us to do that.”
The Salmonbellies were also busy picking up a number of other graduating juniors on draft day, including three goalie prospects and 3 graduating junior Salmonbellies.
Lucas Shein – 4th Rd, 26th overall – a Minto-experienced defender from Coquitlam
Brayden Bell – 5th Rd, 33rd overall – a goalie from the Junior Belllies
Riley Morgan – 6th Rd, 40th overall – a 6 ft leftie from the Jr. Bellies
Kyle Hebert – 7th Rd, 47th overall – another graduating junior New West goalie
Kyle Mooney – 8th Rd, 54th overall – a goaltender out of Mission, who played for Burnaby Jr B and PoCo Junior A.
“Bellies graduates were in high demand at the 2020 draft,” commented Horn. It’s a testament to the tradition we’ve continued here. We wish congratulations to all of them.”
For more information:
Ray Porcellato - firstname.lastname@example.org 1-604-290-5200 Paul Horn – email@example.com 1-604-897-0239