Shae Moate’s connection to the lacrosse community goes back to the age of six.
For the past 11 years, the 17-year-old long stick midfielder from Williamstown has slowly climbed the rungs from grassroots lacrosse to the summit, earning selection for Australia’s under-19 team.
“Coming from under-12 lacrosse to playing in state sides and eventually a national team, it’s something you couldn’t even dream about,” Moate said.
“All the work over the 18 months of trials and camps and the long days out in the field and the work put in the gym and building to become an elite athlete, it’s a great feeling for it to be able to come good and be able to make the team.
“It’s just been hard work and a commitment to the game.”
Moate will have a lot of familiar faces in the team when he travels with the Australian under-19s to Limerick in Ireland for the world championships in July.
He is incredibly one of eight players from his home club Williamstown to have made the team.
Others include Edison Pyke, Harry Gibson, Brock Gourlay, Chinaka Egbujor, Lachlan Warren, Will Olver and Lachy Hodge.
“They’re all kids I’ve grown up playing with since I was six years old,” Moate said.
“They’ve progressed and done the same amount of work as me and put in all the hard work to make the team.”
Moate progressed through the Western Metro team into the Victorian side.
It has been a successful time in the Big V team for Moate, which has included national titles in the past two years.
In April, Moate will represent Victoria on the national stage again, desperately seeking a three-peat of titles.
“To win a national title is an unbelievable feeling,” he said.
“We want to go out this year and win the title again for Victoria and complete the hat-trick.”
Moate could not have asked for a better pathway in lacrosse.
He developed with the highly successful Williamstown program and was driven by being part of the competitive Western Metro set up.
The friendships Moate has made along the way is the cherry on top.
“I’ve built relationships with people, not just at Williamstown and the western area, but also people from all over.
“It’s been really good to build that circle with the whole lacrosse community from across Australia.
“It’s going to be a part of my forever.”
Moate is the Don Deeble Sports Star for March.
The award, hosted by Sunshine Western Region Sports Club and Star Weekly, made possible by donations from Yarraville Club Cricket Club, Strathmore Community Bank and Deer Park Club, recognises talented young athletes from the western suburbs.
To nominate a sports star, email firstname.lastname@example.org