Former Nationals captain commits to Concordia University

Anil Jhalli
Former Nationals captain commits to Concordia University
(Photo : Photo: Anil Jhalli)

Xavier Laurent summed up his time with the Rockland Nationals with one word.  


And while he came up short of his goal to win a Bogart Cup, the former Nationals captain said he will forever be grateful to an organization who believed in him and moulded him into the player he is today.  

“My time with Rockland will always be special to me,” said Laurent. “I gave everything I had and I am really, really proud of how our guys worked last season.” 

As he prepares for the next chapter in his life and budding hockey career, Laurent had a chance to reflect on his last season with the Nationals, one he truly won’t forget.  

Not only was he named the team’s captain, but he was named the CCHL’s top defenseman by racking up 14 goals, which ranked second amongst CCHL defenders, and 43 points, which led all blueliners during the 2023-2024 season.  

Laurent represented the Nats at the Eastern Canada Cup and the CCHL all-star game this season, and led the Nats to their first playoff berth in four years.  

“My time with the Nationals, it was a really stepping stone for me in my hockey career,” said Laurent. “I learned so much and had so much fun, especially last season, and became a better hockey player.” 

Laurent was a big part in leading the Nats for their first postseason berth in four years, where the team also earned a first round playoff win against the Renfrew Wolves, only to lose to the Navan Grads in the second round.  

The former Nats captain said it was amazing to see how the community rallied around the team, and it was special to bring the excitement of playoff hockey back to Rockland.  

He credits the new coaching staff, led by first year coach Justin Pereira, for changing the culture of the team, and bringing out the best in the club’s players.  

“Everytime we came to the rink, the coaches always find out to help us improve,” said Laurent. “They brought out the best in us and helped every single guy on our team.” 

He still feels gutted for not being able to bring the Bogart Cup to Rockland, but is now focused on what comes next.  

Laurent, who is from Laval, has fully committed to Concordia University, and will be attending the post-secondary institution beginning this fall.  

“It’s close to home (in Laval) and they have a great hockey program,” said Laurent who enrolled in the Athletics Therapy program at Concordia University. “I am excited to get started.” 

The Rockland Nationals organization paid its respects to Xavier with a social media post, calling him “a terrific leader for the Nationals both on and off the ice.” 

“Xavier was also a great mentor and leader for all his teammates this season,” the Nationals post on Facebook said. “He leads through his actions with his dedication, discipline and passion for the game. Xavier will always have a special place in the hearts of the Nationals. The Nationals want to thank Xavier for all his time and effort he put into the organization and wish him continued success at this time at Concordia.” 

In 105 career games with the Rockland Nationals, Xavier tallied 18 goals and 39 assists, good for 57 points.  


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