The losing streak doesn’t matter – no matter what, the Nanaimo Timbermen would need to win lacrosse games.
The Coastal Windows Timbermen (1-5) are in the midst of a key stretch of the Western Lacrosse Association schedule that sees them playing three games in five nights.
It’s still relatively early in the season, but the T-men are treating it as must-win time.
“I think you’re at that point from Day 1. I don’t think you can ever take days off…” said Kaleb Toth, coach of the Timbermen. “We’ve got to try to win every game. This is a real tight league.”
He pointed out that a couple of teams have separated themselves above the pack, but then there’s a group of teams that are duking it out.
Nanaimo’s last two losses were both by a single goal. Players feel they can take the experience they’ve gained and start applying it.
“We can’t keep learning. We have to do. The learning time’s over,” said Chris O’Dougherty, Timbermen defender. “This part of the season now we’ve got to start fixing those mistakes.”
Cody Bremner, T-men attacker, said the work ethic is there, and it’s just problems with decision making that need to be fixed.
“If we can focus on that and match our effort and intensity that we’ve had every game that I’ve been here at least, I think we’re going to be fine,” he said. “It’s just the mental side of it.”
Toth echoed that view, adding that keeping focus is what’s challenging about this week’s busy schedule.
“I think the guys mentally have to be prepared,” he said. “Out of a 25-man roster, I’ve got 24 that are healthy.”
It gives the Timbermen some flexibility to insert fresh legs as needed. By the end of it, there are bound to be some guys playing with bumps and bruises, including O’Dougherty who is also squeezing in a field lacrosse game in Maryland this week, believe it or not.
“This week is a test for our bodies,” he said. “I think it showed [last game] that we have some young guys who are in shape. We have the legs and we have the talent.”
GAME ON … The senior A Timbermen play the Langley Thunder on the road Wednesday (June 12). Nanaimo visits the Burnaby Lakers on Friday and then hosts the Coquitlam Adanacs on Sunday at 7 p.m. at Frank Crane Arena.