Junior 'Rocks left with a bellyache


As far as losses go, this one stung like a slap in the belly from a wet fish.

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Looking to land themselves another two points in the B.C. Junior A Lacrosse League, the host Victoria Jr. Shamrocks were instead cuffed 9-7 by the New Westminster Salmonbellies Saturday night at Bear Mountain Arena.

Having scored just three goals in their last outing, the Salmonbellies easily surpassed that mark just 5: 33 into the game, roaring back with four straight goals by that point after surrendering one just 23 seconds in.

Ultimately, it was the Shamrocks - now 4-2 in the standings - who were left reeling, losing at home for the second straight time. New Westminster improves to 3-1 on the campaign.

"Yeah, I don't like losing at home, but we didn't promise a perfect season either," said Jr. Shamrocks head coach Larry Smeltzer. "If we're going to lose at home, it's probably to those two teams [Coquitlam and New Westminster].

"I thought we had some bad breaks. We didn't play well at all in the first period, but in the second they fought back. The biggest positive to me was we fought back," added Smeltzer, whose team trailed 5-2 and 7-3 by periods.

Kyle Dobbie had two goals and three assists to lead the way for the Salmonbellies, while Steven Ferdinandi and Reagan Harding finished with two tallies and two helpers each. But it was Keegan Bal's shorthanded goal, which made it 3-1 just 3: 45 into the game, that really stung.

"It did. The same thing happened against Coquitlam," Smeltzer said.

Justin Goodwin and Anthony Malcolm had the other goals for New Westminster.

Brody Eastwood had two goals and two helpers to add to his impressive seasonal totals to date for Victoria. He has 13 goals and eight assists in six games, but league-leading point-getter Adam Brown, of the Jr. Shamrocks, was virtually shut down with just two late assists. Brown had six goals and 17 assists coming into the game.

Team captain Jake Emms recorded a goal and a helper for Victoria while Chris Casper, Russell Kirk, Nick Sanderson and Jake Cullen rounded out the scoring for the Jr. Shamrocks. Devon Casey had three assists in the losing cause.

The game was a great opportunity to create some separation at the top of the standings as the Jr. Shamrocks sat in first ahead of the 3-0 Coquitlam Adanacs.

Victoria's next home game is May 26 when Burnaby pays the Island a visit. The Jr. 'Rocks travel to Langley next Saturday. mannicchiarico@timescolonist.com Twitter@ tc_vicsports

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