#19 Kyle Dawson, the captain of the Nationals is helping to lead the team in a successful direction through the last season of his Junior career. Dawson has played three consecutive seasons with the Nationals and was named the captain for the 2018-19 season.
With a month left in the regular season, Dawson is not focused on the closure of his junior career, “it is sad thinking this is my last year but, I am fully invested in this season, not looking to forward ahead”.
Dawson has been playing in the GOJHL since 2015. He holds a wealth of experience on the Nationals and has been able to excel as a critical offensive player and leader, fundamental to the Nationals successes.
The Nationals head into the last month of their regular season with 11 more games to go.
“Keep playing as a team, keep our game simple, and go out and continue playing our game,” Dawson said. “Make simple passes, tape-to-tape, put pucks on net, we usually have success this way, we just need to keep doing that.”
The Nationals are currently leading the standings in their division and are hoping to continue their progression to the completion of the regular season and into the playoffs.
Last season Dawson received the Kevin McIntosh Award as Western Conference Top Defensive Forward and was selected as the Western Conference Defensive Player of the Month for October.
With him stepping up to the Captain role this season on the Nationals, Dawson is focused solely on team goals rather than personal goals.
“I want the team to finish first, that’s obviously the ultimate goal for us in the regular season,” Dawson said. “for myself there is not too much, I want to do whatever I can to make those team goals happen.”
Dawson was able to gain great experience for his leadership role on the Nationals this past summer as he was the assistant captain on the Team Canada Junior Lacrosse team. He helped lead the team to gold at the 2018 World Junior Lacrosse Championships.
“That was a pretty big experience,” he said with a smile. “being a leader there taught me some good things, I played with other great leaders, the other assistants and captain, they were great and I learned a couple things from them on trying to keep the guys up during the games.”
He is trying to utilize his leadership role on the Nationals to keep the team positive and really make sure the guys mesh together.
For the last three seasons, the Nationals have been the GOJHL Western Conference Champions and are looking for a fourth. Dawson was able to experience two trophies with the two years playing in London and highlighted them as some of his greatest experiences with the team.
“Basically, the team aspect and all the fun things we have been able to do like skate with the fans,” Dawson says when reflecting on his time with the Nationals. “I can remember every single player I have played with, driving to the rink with them, going over to people’s houses, going out for team dinners.”
Dawson is beloved by the Nationals team, staff, and fans and will be sad to lose such a great player, however, the current focus is on winning the GOJHL Western Conference Championship and keeping the movement throughout the playoffs.