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TRIP TO PRINCIPAL'S OFFICE MEMORABLE FOR HARGREAVES
11/30/2012 - 3:15pm

By Craig Rybczynski -- Getting called down to the principal’s office usually precedes some type of reprimand. But for Patrick Hargreaves, it was a visit he will never forget.

The 39-year-old physical education teacher was stunned to see TV cameras, and an office filled with reporters and supporters as he walked through the door. He did not realize the importance of the moment until he saw a lacrosse jersey.

“I didn’t know what was happening until I saw the jersey from the Knighthawks,” said an elated Hargreaves. “Then I was like, Wow!”

The physical education teacher at Mont Lasalle High School in Laval was selected to play in the National Lacrosse League with the defending champion Rochester Knighthawks. Hargreaves was so excited that he wore the jersey to all of his afternoon classes.

“I was floating on a cloud (the rest of the day). I wanted to show the kids that when they persevere there is a nice goal to go for,” said the Hargreaves, who has been teaching for 18 years.

Hargreaves will make his professional lacrosse debut on Saturday December 15th at 7:30 p.m. at the Bell Centre. The preseason game will include the Rochester Knighthawks and their longtime rivals, the Toronto Rock. The lifelong Montreal Canadiens will fulfill a childhood dream by playing in the same building as the Canadiens.

“It’s a dream come true. I never thought I would ever play at the Bell Centre,” he said. “I was a Montreal fan for sure. Just growing up and going there as a fan is pretty incredible. So just to be on the floor there will be incredible.”

Hargreaves and Mike Kirky of the Québec Lacrosse Federation were selected by the Knighthawks and the Rock during the Québec Lacrosse Showcase held on November 17th at the Club West Island in Beaconsfield. Thirty five players, all members of the Federation and performing stars in Québec, Eastern Ontario or the USA, had gathered and competed for the honor of playing with the Rock and Knighthawks in the December 15th preseason game.

Hargreaves plays defense for the Senior “B” Vermont Voyageurs and serves as one of the team’s assistant captains. In 2011, he played in the league’s All-Star Game and scored four goals against the stars from the Iroquois Lacrosse Association. He was using the open tryouts as a barometer to measure his readiness for the upcoming season, but it turned out to be much more than a training session.

“I just wanted to see where I was right now for the season because I still play. They were having a Lacrosse Day and that was it,” said Hargreaves, who joked about lying about his age when he registered. “I was just pushing my limits. I am training every day for whatever is coming.”

Hargreaves was rated No. 1 in the areas of conditioning, defensive abilities and physical strength. The 6-1, 195-pound defenseman is one of the very few Québec players who plays and excels in box lacrosse, field lacrosse and intercrosse. He will now have the opportunity to play in front of his friends and family, which could reach 100 if his phone is any indication of his group of supporters.

“It has been ringing all the time with Facebook and texts because all my kids at school love the game,” he said. “The kids were writing how proud they were about their own teacher.”


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