Victoria, BC – Game #1 between the Victoria Shamrocks and Nanaimo Timbermen illuminated why sports are so amazing. The intensity, the chaos, and emotional roller coaster that comes with the win or loss is what makes sports so exciting and deflating at any given moment. Any of the previously mentioned words could be used to describe Wednesday’s game between the ‘Rocks and the T-men. It was one of the most entertaining Victoria Shamrocks lacrosse games all season and although the score did not go the Shamrocks way, fans alike agreed that this was one of the best spectacles all season from the team in the green and white.
The first period was deadlocked at 2 even though Nanaimo got nearly twice the amount of shots the Shamrocks had, 30-17. Casey Jackson and Steve Priolo fought for the goals in that first period for Victoria. It was Priolo’s second goal in three games while it was the first of many for Jackson on the night.
Everything appeared to be going right for the Shamrocks in the 2nd. Casey Jackson added two quick goals less than 2 minutes into the period and Rhys Duch got his name on the scoring sheet for the first time since July 6th, giving the ‘Rocks a 5-4 lead. The Timbermen proceeded to score 4 unanswered goals and finished the period with a 7-5 lead heading into the final 20 minutes. Both teams were given the chance to play as only 1 penalty had been called up to that point.
The craziness of the third period can best be symbolized by Jesse King scoring two goals in 3 on 3 actions that tied the game at 7. Very rarely do you see 3 on 3 and not only did Jesse King take advantage of it but he now gave his team momentum ahead with the game tied in the final 10 minutes of the third period. Each team would score two goals with Chris Wardle getting both of those goals for the ‘Rocks, his first goal since June 22nd, and that meant that the Shamrocks and Timbermen would see overtime once again.
Rob Hellyer and Derek Lloyd each got the Shamrocks goals in the 10 minute overtime period. Derek Lloyd had the Q Centre in firm belief that the Shamrocks had secured the win with his fast-break dump into the net with 24.8 seconds left on the clock. To everyone’s disbelief, Nanaimo managed to score 2 goals as well meaning that we would have to go to a 20-minute sudden death overtime period. The game winning goal was scored by Nanaimo forward Jon Philips at 9:51 in sudden death as the Timbermen walked out of The Q Centre with their first playoff win since 2007. The Final Score: 12-11.
Game 2 of this series goes Friday night at Frank Crane Arena in Nanaimo.