Lakers win battle but lose battle to get into WLA playoffs
The Burnaby Lakers won the battle, but lost the war.
A 12-11 victory over the Maple Ridge Burrards last Friday had put the Lakers in the catbird's seat for the final spot in the Western Lacrosse Association playoffs. But an unexpected 12-7 win by the Burrards over the league-leading New Westminster Salmonbellies, combined with a 13-3 upset of the Victoria Shamrocks by the Nanaimo Timbermen created a three-way logjam for the right to play on, with each team at 16 points. The Burrards advanced by having one more win than Burnaby and Nanaimo.
Needing a win to stay in the playoff hunt, the Lakers matched the Burrards stride for stride in a hard-fought showdown at Copeland Arena. After taking an early 1-0 lead on Trevor Moore's power play goal 2:41 into the first period, the Burrards stormed back with three straight, including a pair by Curtis Dickson less than a minute apart. Chase Williams and Scott Tinning got Burnaby back on even terms before Dickson's hat trick goal put Maple Ridge back in front until the Lakers' Peter McFetridge tied it again with three seconds left to play.
That goal seemed to fire up the Lakers who scored the first three goals of the second period, two of them by Scott Jones. Aaron Davis got one back for Maple Ridge half way through the frame, but Colton Clark restored Burnaby's advantage less than a minute later.
After Joel Delgarno and Jones exchanged goals, the Burrards seized control by netting the next four. But the Lakers refused to roll over.
A pair of goals by Scott Tinning tied it before the third period was half over, then Jones put Burnaby back in front with his fourth of the game. It proved to be the winner, as only Randy Daly was able to score as the Burrards pulled their goalie for an extra attacker.
With the win they needed in their ledger, the Lakers then had to wait out the weekend to see how their nearest rivals fared.