The Nanaimo Timbermen couldn’t quite force the outcome they wanted on Sunday.
The Coastal Windows Timbermen senior A lacrosse team was defeated 9-6 in overtime by the New Westminster Salmonbellies that night at Frank Crane Arena.
The T-men held a 6-3 lead early in the third period, but couldn’t manage an insurance goal the rest of the way. Instead, New West played most of the final 10 minutes on the power play and wore down Nanaimo’s defences.
“I thought we played a great game all the way through, up until probably five minutes to go in the game and then we started to lose our composure…” said Art Webster, T-men coach.
“We can’t put ourselves in those situations to allow the referee to make those calls. We have to be smarter.”
Even after the visitors forced OT, the Timbermen had a chance to win – they successfully killed off a major penalty that spanned the end of regulation and the start of overtime.
“It definitely wore down our defence a bit. We killed off the five-minute penalty but I think we ran out of gas,” said Mike MacLeod, Timbermen player.
“I thought we did a good job with [playing] 60 minutes, but when you’re parading to the box in the last 10 minutes of the third period it makes it tough.”
Webster praised his team’s penalty kill, which allowed just one goal on six opportunities, and also goalie Zack Boychuk who made 40 saves in defeat.
The offence, missing Lewis Ratcliff to injury, improved as the game went on but wasn’t good enough to beat the league’s best team.
“We had some gorgeous opportunities to put it in the net and we didn’t do it,” Webster said.
MacLeod scored two goals and Scott Ranger, Graham Palmer, Carlton Schuss and Jordan Sealock had Nanaimo’s other markers.
Sunday’s game was also notable as it featured Matt Wray’s first fight in the WLA. A heavyweight champion in junior lacrosse and hockey, Wray pounded New West’s Jamie Floris with rights and lefts for an easy decision.
The Timbermen started the weekend with an 11-10 road win Friday over the Burnaby Lakers. Ranger had three goals and two assists in that one, Palmer had a pair and Joel Henry had a goal and five assists. Mike MacLeod, Mat MacLeod and Schuss also scored leading up to Ryan Forslund’s game-winning tally with six minutes left. Matt King made 40 saves for the goaltending win.
LACROSSE TALK … By going 1-1 on the weekend, the Timbermen (3-4-2) jumped two spots in the Western Lacrosse Association standing and now sit in fifth place … Next action for the senior A T-men is Saturday (July 2) when the sixth-place Maple Ridge Burrards (4-6) visit Frank Crane Arena for a 7 p.m. faceoff.