The Nanaimo Timbermen were eliminated from playoff contention, but they didn’t fizzle out. The senior A lacrosse team had one of its better showings of the season, a 13-10 loss to the first-placed Victoria Shamrocks on Tuesday at Frank Crane Arena.
“We want to be there, we want to be a top team in this league and to get to the top, you’ve got to beat the guys at the top,” said Kaleb Toth, coach of the Timbermen.
The game’s outcome seemed to get decided early, as Victoria scored five goals in the first six minutes to chase Nanaimo’s starting goalie Zak Boychuk.
But the T-men chipped away and twice narrowed the deficit to two goals in the third period.
“We composed ourselves and we fought back and we did a real good job of doing that,” said Toth.
Cayle Ratcliff, Timbermen captain, said a team can’t afford to start slowly against an opponent like the Shamrocks.
“We put ourselves in a hole and we weren’t able to quite crawl out of that,” he said. “But I give our boys a lot of credit, we worked hard and we had no quit in us.”
Eli McLaughlin led the T-men with a hat trick, Randy Jones scored a pair and Mac Johnston had a goal and three helpers. Cody Bremner and Ratcliff had a goal and two assists each and Conrad Chapman and Brody Eastwood were the other scorers. Pete Dubenski made 35 saves.
Ratcliff said the rivalry between the Island teams always makes for good lacrosse.
“Hopefully it’s a good showing for the crowd and for the city,” Ratcliff said. “It’s good to see some fans in the seats and hopefully they’ll keep coming out and supporting us and we’re not going to quit on them.”
GAME ON … The T-men visit the Burnaby Lakers on Friday (July 17) and host the Maple Ridge Burrards on Sunday at 7 p.m. at Frank Crane.