ST. LEO, Fla – For Saint Leo University freshman lacrosse player Charlie Kurtenbach, athletics is in his DNA.
The young Lion’s player is the son of Adam Kurtenbach, a former college lacrosse player at California’s Whittier College, while his grandfather, Orland Kurtenbach, played 20 years in the NHL and was the first captain of the Vancouver Canucks.
For Charlie, he is focused on forging his own path and being the best student-athlete that he can be while he attends Saint Leo.
“I really want to make a difference on the program, leave my mark, and be one of the better players to come through here,” said Kurtenbach, he also stressed the student half of “student-athlete”.
“I think getting my degree comes first. That is something every student should want to do”
The White Rock, B.C. native is aware that even though he has the talent, scoring an impressive 52 goals his senior year at Skyline High, he must continue to work hard, as well as adapt to the college game.
“The pace is faster, the defenders are bigger, and they hit a lot harder,” said Kurtenbach, while sitting in the stands at Saint Leo’s lacrosse field. “It’s a big adjustment going from being able to run around and do whatever you feel like, to where if you do do something wrong, you’re going to pay for it.”
Despite his youth, the third-generation athlete appears to be picking up the college game at a fast rate.
He was able to score his first goal in his first career game at Saint Leo, but not without a little heckling from his teammates.
“Everyone was sort of giving me crap for not scoring yet, but when I finally buried I was pretty happy just to get it over with,” said Kurtenbach.
“It was a relief honestly, just to get it out of the way.”