Down Memory Lane - Dave Tasker
Down Memory Lane Articles - by Stan Shillington
Gentleman Dave Tasker was born to excel in sports. During his active competitive years, Dave participated in rugby, soccer, tennis and basketball. But it was on the lacrosse floor where his star shone the brightest.
While his father played rugby and basketball in college, he never picked up the gutted stick; however, that didn't stop him from supporting his four sons - , , and - while they worked their way through the minor lacrosse divisions in South Vancouver. Even sister Aileen donned pads as the practice goaltender in back yard family games.
In 1968, Dave joined brother Alan on the South Vancouver Legion junior squad. When Alan turned senior with Vancouver Burrards, brothers Bob and Brian joined Dave. The trio remained with the club when the franchise shifted to the Richmond Roadrunners in 1971.
And what a year 1971 turned out to be. Dave blasted seven goals in the first Minto Cup game against the favourite Peterborough PCO's and soon found that he was the prime target for the Eastern defensive specialists. Despite the added attention, Dave picked up a total of 18 goals in leading Richmond to the Canadian junior championship.
After gathering 157 goals and 123 assists for 280 points in just 83 junior games, Dave turned senior with brother Alan's Burrards team. To no one's surprise, Dave scored 75 points and earned the top rookie award for 1972.
When the National Lacrosse League was set up in 1975, Dave turned professional with Montreal Quebecois. Two years and 253 points later, the League folded and Dave returned to the Burrards for five more seasons. Dave was picked up by New Westminster Salmonbellies in 1976, joined brothers Bob and Brian in their quest for the Mann Cup. And win they did!
Dave must have enjoyed drinking champagne from the Cup, for the following year he captured the League's MVP Award in leading Vancouver to the Canadian championship.
When he retired following the 1980 season, Dave had accumulated 390 goals and 455 assists for 845 points in 311 WLA and NLL games. An effective but clean player, Dave had only 92 minutes in penalties. Interestingly, one of the highlites of his career came on July 27, 1971 when Dave and his younger brothers, Bob and Brian, moved up from their junior team to play with older brother Alan in a Burrards game against Victoria. It is the only time that four siblings played for one team in a single game.
Dave Tasker, now 47 and living in Delaware, will be inducted into the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame in November, 1998.