New Westminster Salmonbellies players Tony Tremblay and Curtis Hodgson defend against Nanaimo Timbermen forward Braylon Lumb during Sunday’s WLA game at Frank Crane Arena. GREG SAKAKI/The News Bulletin

Timbermen win season opener, lose home opener

Nanaimo defeats Victoria 11-6 then falls to New Westminster 11-9

The Nanaimo Timbermen made it through a tough opening weekend with one win and one loss.

The senior A T-men won their Western Lacrosse Association season opener on the road Friday, defeating the Victoria Shamrocks 11-6, but then lost their home opener Sunday to the New Westminster Salmonbellies, 11-9.

Timbermen coach Kaleb Toth said while his team showed intensity in the third period, that was missing earlier in the game.

“They were beating us to loose balls, we were winning faceoffs but they were getting the ball,” Toth said. “And possession’s nine-tenths of lacrosse. The more you have the ball, the more scoring opportunities you get. We need the ball.”

New West got up 8-4 at one point, but the T-men were able to climb back and tie the game and give themselves a chance.

“I knew we had the capability to come back, it was just we needed that effort, and then in the third, we got it,” Toth said. “But then we made a few mistakes, turned over the ball a couple times and they ended up putting it in the back of our net.”

Even with one win on the weekend against a contender, the Timbermen feel like they could have gone one better.

“Teams from years past, I would have been happy with a split. This team’s too good; we need to win those games,” Toth said. “I’m disappointed with the effort today, but they know about it and they are going to focus and be better for our next game.”

The WLA website has been experiencing technical difficulties to start the season and so statistics from the first two games were unavailable at press time. Braylon Lumb and Tyson Roe each scored twice in the season opener and goaltender Charles Claxton was player of the game.

In Sunday’s home opener, Brody Eastwood led the way with a hat trick and Claxton tended goal.

In other team news, goaltender Pete Dubenski was traded to the Shamrocks over the weekend in exchange for a third-round draft choice.

GAME ON … Next action for the Timbermen isn’t until June 6, when they host the Shamrocks at 7 p.m. at Frank Crane Arena.

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