Friday, July 31, 2015

Steenhuis may be returning to Lakers sooner than expected

Mark Steenhuis is close to a return with the Peterborough Lakers.
(Photo: Tim Prothero)
On the evening when one of their stars was busy chasing the league scoring title en route to a 12-4 win over the KW Kodiaks, the Peterborough Lakers received more good news. Shawn Evans scored 11 points (6 goals, 5 assists) to pull within one of Dhane Smith for the Major Series Lacrosse lead. Even better for the Lakers, he could soon be rejoined on the Lakers right side by Mark Steenhuis, who was believed to have been lost for the year to a knee injury early in the season.

Peterborough GM Paul Day said Thursday that Steenhuis is likely to take warmup with the team this Sunday when they open the semifinals at home against the Oakville Rock. Day said the doctor let them know three or four weeks ago that the injury did not involve an ACL tear, as originally feared, and that it is healing well. Now Steenuis is close to returning. 

"It's a positive sign that we're probably going to see him at some point in the playoffs. We're expecting him to play in the playoffs, we just don't know when, but it could be sooner than later," Day said. 

Steenuis led the league in scoring in 2014 with 43 goals and 40 assists. His 83 points were 26 more than second-place Shayne Jackson of the Brooklin Redmen. But this summer he appeared in just four games (8g, 6a, 14pts) before being hurt. 

"The more athletes we get the better," Day said of adding the highly athletic Steenhuis to the roster. "Obviously, it's pretty tough to check him, Curtis Dickson and Shawn Evans. It's a good combination and I think it just makes us that much better all around the floor."