The Georgia Swarm was looking to add to its defense during the 2018 NLL Entry Draft. With its first two selections in the first round, the team made huge strides in that direction by drafting Brendan Bomberry and Adam Wiedemann.
Wiedemann was the 2018 Major Series Lacrosse Rookie of the Year with the Brampton Excelsiors (Senior A). Listed at 6-foot-1 and 175 pounds, Wiedemann is known for his excellent two-way play and shut-down defense.
The Caledon East, Ontario native graduated from Belmont Abbey College, where he played attack for the Crusaders. During his senior season, Wiedemann led Belmont Abbey in points with 67 (38G, 29A) while scooping up 41 ground balls and causing six turnovers.
Given his recent accolade and lacrosse pedigree, it’s no surprise Wiedemann went in the first round of the draft. The 22-year-old is raring to get to Training Camp, continue his strong play, and make an immediate impact on the talented Swarm roster. It was just one of the things he spoke with GeorgiaSwarm.com about after the draft:
Congrats on being drafted No. 8 overall. Take me back to draft night. Brendan Bomberry has just been selected; what’s going through your head before your name was called?
I kind of knew my range was coming up for when my name could possibly get called. So, I had to start bracing myself for the excitement. When the Swarm made that trade and based on talking to them at the combine and stuff like that, I kind of had a decent idea that I was going to go at the eighth pick since they had the back-to-back. That was in the back of my mind when they made that trade. When I heard my name get called, I was pretty excited. Honestly, I was through the roof with excitement.
Let’s jump back a bit. How’d you get into lacrosse?
Lacrosse is pretty much in my blood. My uncle, Jim Veltman, he’s a big role model for me in the lacrosse world, and I look up to him a lot and try to mimic my game after him. Just watching as a kid while he played, I fell in love with the sport, and I started as soon as I could sign up when I was four years old. I’ve been playing ever since and loving the game ever since. You could say a dream came true in going into the NLL.
You went to Belmont Abbey College and played with Brampton in Junior and Senior A and had two different roles, playing attack in Belmont Abbey and defense with Brampton. How did that come about?
I was really recruited as a defensive middie, kind of like a transition D guy in field lacrosse. But we didn’t have too many lefties on the team, so my coach made the executive decision that I’d be on attack, and it worked out pretty well, honestly. So, I got to have the luxury of playing defense in box lacrosse and learning how to have an offensive mindset from four years of attack in field.
How did playing attack help your defensive indoor game?
When you’re playing attack, you have to read the defense and spectate on everything that they’re doing while you have the ball and off-ball. So, I could translate that aspect to defense, where I’d be observing the offense now and trying to read their plays. Like on attack, I’d be reading their slides or how they’re approaching me when they’re going to play one-on-one, something like that. So, I used that to translate into the box game and get my approaches better one-on-one going up to guys and reading offenses and knowing when to go and when not to go.
Photo Credit: Belmont Abbey College
Do you feel like that helped you when you graduated to Senior A and were named the MSL Rookie of the Year?
Yeah, that and I had really good mentors on the team coming in that helped me a lot. I learned a lot from them as soon as I got on the team. They definitely helped propel me to get that award, which was pretty shocking.
You played college and MSL lax with Connor Sellars. What’s it like being on a third team with him?
It’s always a great opportunity to be able to play with one of your best buddies, so whenever you can have that chance, it’s awesome. Connor’s helped me out a lot cause he’s older and he’s been through it all already. I definitely look up to him for advice and stuff like that when I was in school and now getting into the league. He’s helped me a lot with what to expect in Training Camp, what to expect with a contract, that kind of stuff. Definitely helped me out a lot with stuff that I didn’t know.
I love playing with him, and I think he likes playing with me, too. It’s going to be awesome to get on the floor together and do some things out there. I’m looking forward to it. It’s going to be fun.
What were some of the things he told you about the Swarm?
Just that it’s a great bunch of guys that are really close. Everyone’s there for one reason, and that’s to win. The culture on the team is a winning culture. I love that. I’ve always been on a team like that. He’s definitely been just a big help in general with everything. He’s got an answer to all of my questions, and I’m really grateful for that, because I feel like that gives me a bit of an advantage over some other guys.
With Belmont Abbey being in North Carolina, did you ever get a chance to visit Atlanta?
We played at Georgia Tech. That’s the only time I’ve ever been there. We played a fall scrimmage there against a couple teams. It’s like a meeting area for a bunch of teams, and we had a fall scrimmage there. That’s the only time I’ve been to Atlanta, so I don’t know much about it.
So, you’re going to get to experience a brand-new city when you come down for games.
Yeah, that’s going to be awesome. I love experiencing new places. I’m excited to check it out.
Jumping back to the draft, you’ve had a few days to let that night and the excitement sink in. What are you feeling now about being selected by a team that competes annually for championships?
I feel really honored that they see that kind of value in me to be on their championship-caliber team, and I just feel really blessed, honestly, to live out a dream. I can’t thank Georgia enough for making that happen.
It’s looking like the Swarm will have a really competitive Training Camp defensively. What’s your expectation for yourself going into it?
I’m going to go in and just work as hard as I can and give the coaches a reason to put me on the team and get me on the floor. I don’t want to come in not in shape or anything like that, because that would obviously hurt my chances. Just come in with an open mind and a lot of work ethic and try and learn as much as I can from the older guys on the team and the coaches, as well.
Photo Credit: Belmont Abbey College
Cheat day treat?
I like a good burger for dinner, then for dessert, pumpkin pie. Definitely my favorite dessert.
Star player in a different sport, what would that sport be?
Men’s volleyball. I played it in high school, and my extended family and cousins, they’re really good at volleyball in Canada. They dominate the leagues here. I’d want to be a part of that with them. It’d be cool.
Was not expecting that answer.
I was going to say hockey, but that’s kind of cliché and everyone wants to be a hockey player. Kind of going out of the box a bit.
Favorite sports team?
Big Toronto Maple Leafs fan and Pittsburg Penguins fan.
Best lacrosse memory?
My best lacrosse memory is a toss-up between winning the Midget Summer Games for box lacrosse here in Ontario. That was a crazy experience. It’s kind of like the Olympics, but not really. It’s like the summer games with an opening ceremony and everything, and there’s a bunch of different sports that go to it and are a part of it. It was in Toronto when we were that age. Our team, we won. We had an unreal team.
It’s a toss-up between that and recently winning the Conference Championship at Belmont Abbey with our senior class last year. There was about 15 of us that played together since the beginning, so it was really nice to be able to share that with those guys, some of my best buddies coming out of there.
Season Tickets for the Swarm’s 2018-19 season are On Sale Now! Season Ticket packages include 10 games (nine regular season games and one postseason game) and a handful of VIP benefits. Join Sting City by reserving your membership today by calling 844-4-GASWARM.