CALGARY — New to the Calgary Roughnecks left-side, forward Riley Loewen is off to a hot start, having already matched his goal total from last season.

Loewen, a 26-year-old from Burnaby, B.C., has already established himself within the Roughnecks offence and looks to be a key piece to the puzzle. His combination of athleticism, offensive skill and off-ball abilities make him a very valuable asset on the floor.

We spoke with Loewen about the trade, his lacrosse idol, and more.

On becoming a member of the Roughnecks:

“When it first happened, it was a little shocking leaving all of those guys, but coming into the organization, everyone was so welcoming. I was lucky enough to know about half of the guys already, so I didn’t feel like an outcast right away. I was pretty much welcomed and brought into the team right away.”

On playing in three different cities in three seasons:

“It’s a little tough changing every year. But I’m also lucky to play in pretty close cities to where I live in Vancouver. So Edmonton was an hour and bit flight, Saskatoon was two hours, and Calgary is only an hour, so I’m pretty lucky that way with short flights. It’s tough changing cities every year, but Calgary is a great city and I love going there and playing for those fans.”

On having won two Champion’s Cups and looking for his third:

“Obviously I was very fortunate to be on two very good championship teams. Calgary is my team this year and whatever I can do to win a championship, that’s why we play. That’s why we got into this game, to win the championship. There’s no feeling like it.”

On which players he looked up to growing up:

“Oh who was my lacrosse idol…that’s a good one. I guess growing up the Gaits were always a big influence for a lot of my generation. I grew up watching the Burnaby Lakers back when I was younger, so Kaleb Toth was a guy I watched when I was younger and when he was in Calgary. I’d say he’s pretty high up there.”

On what position he would play if he played football:

“I can’t really throw a football very well, so I wouldn’t be a quarterback. I’d say maybe a wide receiver. I’m pretty quick and I can catch the ball pretty well.

“I can block, too.”

On facing the Rush on Saturday:

“I think they got off to a slow start, but right now I would still say that they are the best team. They’re the reigning champs, right? They’re really well coached by Keenan and they are going to come out looking for a win. We’re going to have to play our best game so far. I think each game we get better and I think we’re going to have to have our best effort this weekend.”

On how the offence can find ways to score against the Rush:

“Their defence is arguably the best in the league, so we have to move the ball, get as many swings as we can. I think we’ve been doing that really well. At some points in the game we get away from that and that’s when we’re not successful. I think if we move the ball, everyone is in and out of their sticks quickly, and just keep them moving. That’s always tough to defend, no matter how good you are.”

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