The Nanaimo Timbermen's Western Lacrosse Association season came to a disappointing end Saturday night, losing their final game of the season 11-7 to the Maple Ridge Burrards.
It was a final contest that largely saw the T-Men go through the motions, eliminated from playoff contention last week, and came on the heels of another third period collapse in a 14-8 loss to the Victoria Shamrocks the night before.
On Saturday, the Burrards were led by Riley Loewen with three goals and three assists while Jarrett Davis had two goals and three assists, and Garrett McIntosh, Mike Mallory, Colton Porter, Dayne Michaud, Ben McIntosh and Jonathan Munk all scored once. Chris Levis made 23 saves on 29 shots for the win while Carson Michaud stopped eight of nine shots.
Jake Emms and Jimmy Delaney both scored twice for Nanaimo in response as Cayle Ratcliff, Paul Brebber and Kyle Hofer also tallied. Brandon Mulligan stopped 25 of 36 shots in the loss and Zach Boychuk stopped all three he faced.
It is not the final impression rookie head coach Kaleb Toth wanted to leave on the year.
"It was disappointing, I let them know from the beginning that I wanted to win the last two games and unfortunately we didn't," he said.
"Now it's something that I can build on for next year, I know what it's going to take to get the guys pumped up and we'll see what it takes."
Friday night in Victoria was a scene the Timbermen have seen played out far too often this season, in a game through 40 minutes, only to see undisciplined play catch up to them in the third period.
Nanaimo entered the final frame trailing just 8-6, but two quick power play goals by former captain Scott Ranger put the game away early.
Ranger led the Shamrocks with five goals while fellow former Timbermen star Cory Conway had a game-high eight points (two goals, six assists). Derek Lowe added three goals and four assists, Blair Pinnock scored three goals and one assist and Corey Small added one goal and three assists. Matt Vinc made 28 saves on 34 shots for the win and Matt Findell stopped five of seven shots.
Ratcliff and Cody Bremner had two goals and two assists each for the T-Men and Emms, Delaney, Brebber and Hofer each scored once. Boychuk made 28 saves on 40 shots in the loss while Mulligan stopped six of eight shots.
The fact Nanaimo missed the playoffs was no surprise to anyone after they traded Ranger and Conway in the off-season.
But the fact they played well for most of the season does not make it any easier for Toth to swallow.
"Everyone's expectation of us, we exceeded them. My own expectations we didn't exceed, but maybe I was a little too unrealistic with what I thought we had," he said. "I definitely think we have a good team, we're missing a few key pieces, but other than that we're going to be right there and we're definitely going to be able to compete for next year."
Times Colonist / Victoria Shamrock Matt Yager moves the ball past Nanaimo Timbermen Cayle Ratcliff in WLA action at the Bear Mountain Arena in Victoria on Friday Victoria won 14-8.;
© Copyright 2013