The junior Timbermen don’t have experience closing out lacrosse games, and that showed in their home opener.
Nanaimo’s junior A lacrosse team twice held two-goal leads in the third period on Saturday at Frank Crane Arena, but couldn’t pin down the win against the New Westminster Salmonbellies. The ’Bellies tied the game with their goalie pulled late, then scored the only four goals of overtime.
“We felt like we were going to go and get that win. It was our game to take,” said Ken Morrison, coach of the junior Timbermen.
The offence stalled in OT, he said, and he felt that surrendering goals in the extra frame “took the wind out of our sails.”
The Salmonbellies threw 72 shots at Timbermen goalie Matt Zeller over 70 minutes, and a lot of those shots were quality chances. Morrison said there wasn’t enough talking on defence, but he said most of the problems stemmed from the transition game.
“We had a lot of breakdowns on line changes… with the offence coming off the floor in time,” he said. “They fast-breaked us quite a bit.”
Brett Hawrys led Nanaimo’s offence with a hat trick and three assists and Brett Fleming had two goals and four assists. Corey Shires and Travis Mickelson had a pair of goals apiece and Nick Sanderson and Jaeden Gilles were the other scorers.
The next day the Timbermen lost 18-10 to the Coquitlam Adanacs on the road. Shires had a hat trick, Mitch Parker had a goal and five assists and Hawrys scored twice. Fleming, Sanderson, Gilles and Andrew Miller also tallied.
GAME ON … The Timbermen visit the Coquitlam Adanacs today (May 4) and then host the Port Coquitlam Saints on Saturday (May 10) at 5 p.m. at Frank Crane Arena.