Salmonbellies subdue Timbermen
With all teams having two games left in the regular season, the New Westminster Salmonbellies are on the outside looking in for a Western Lacrosse Association playoff spot.
Mathematically, however, it is also possible for them to finish as high as second.
With four teams making the post-season party. New West sits fifth with an 8-8-0 record, two points behind Victoria (9-7-0) and Burnaby (8-6-2), and four points behind Langley (10-6-0) and Coquitlam (10-6-0).
The Salmonbellies finish up the regular season by playing host to Coquitlam at Queen's Park Arena on Thursday, 7:45 p.m., and then traveling to Maple Ridge to take on the last-place Burrards (3-12-1).
However, Langley, Burnaby and Victoria all hold tiebreaker advantages over New West. The Salmonbellies can gain one over Coquitlam if they beat the Adanacs.
The Salmonbellies have not missed the WLA playoffs since 2004. They have finished first four of the last five years coming in second in 2009 and 2006, and third in 2005.
The Salmonbellies rebounded from a tough loss in Victoria last Tuesday to defeat the Nanaimo Timbermen 12-7 at Queen's Park Arena on Thursday.
In Victoria, the Salmonbellies' third-period rally came up short as the Shamrocks held on for a 9-7 victory. On Thursday, the Salmonbellies put the Timbermen away in the third period scoring five goals to the visitors' one.
The trio of Corbyn Tao, Alex Gajic and Ilija Gajic did most of the damage for the Salmonbellies combining for 16 points. Tao had six points, including two goals, while Alex Gajic notched three goals and two assists and his brother Ilija had two goals and three helpers.
Mike Berekoff also scored twice for the Salmonbellies with singles going to Tyler Crompton, Jeff Zywicki and Tom Johnson. The latter two also added two assists.
Tyler Richards made 40 saves in the New West net as the ’Bellies outshot the T-men 50-47.