Okotoks Raiders Club History
The OMLA was founded by Dana Robinson and Brad Banister in 1995. In this first Season, Okotoks had two teams: a PeeWee team and a Bantam team. Dana and Brad coached both teams. As registration came around for the third season, summer hockey became popular, and Lacrosse lost their players to the summer hockey program in 1997.
However, not ones to give up, Dana and Brad started lacrosse again in Okotoks in 1999. That Season, they had three teams, a Novice team, a PeeWee team and a Bantam team. Dana and Brad were the coaches for all three teams!
With each following season, registration increased. The 2000 Season had 77 players making up five teams and the 2001 Season had 147 players making up ten teams. In 2002, 224 players registered for lacrosse fielding fifteen teams: two Tyke, three Novice, four PeeWee, 5 Bantam and one Midget team. Dana and Brad continued to coach but fortunately found lots of help and no longer had to coach all fifteen teams!
In 2001 Brad was successful in securing an NLL franchise, I‘m sure you‘ve heard of them, The Calgary Roughnecks! Again Brad hung on, promoting the sport and his team guiding it to the NLL Championship title in 2004. Now in its 9th year and a solid fan base, it has helped grow the sport of lacrosse throughout the province.
In 2002, Okotoks Masters Lacrosse was founded by Lloyd Drews and the Okotoks Junior program was formed with its first Junior B Tier II team.Since then lacrosse has been growing, with people realizing the importance in developing young athlete‘s skills by enrolling them in multiple sports.
The Okotoks Mustangs have since brought home many Championships, and have been represented by our players on the National team, just a small example of the calibre of lacrosse we have, and will continue to have in Okotoks.
We continue to honor our founders each year at the "Spring Classic" tournament by presenting the tournament Champions the Banister, and the Robinson Cups.