It was Sunday Funday for the Victoria Shamrocks who defeated the Nanaimo Timbermen in Game #3 of the WLA semi-final series by a score of 11-8.
The Shamrocks had lost their last 2 home games before Sunday but that was in the rearview mirror after Friday’s 8-4 Game #2 win. Sunday’s game was about getting ahead and staying ahead – getting ahead in the game and staying ahead until the final whistle blew.
Even though the Shamrocks gave up the first goal, they took the lead halfway through the first and never let it go.
Rob Hellyer kicked off the scoring for the Shamrocks. He fired the first goal exactly 4 minutes into the first. It was Victoria in front 4-3 after the first 20 minutes. Other goal scorers in the period included Zac Christianson, Casey Jackson (on the power play), and Tyson Gibson. The Shamrocks also found themselves ahead in the shots department, leading 19-13 after the 1st.
4 quick second period goals for the Shamrocks and they were ahead with an 8-4 lead. Jackson added another couple of goals while Jesse King got his first of the night thanks to great transition play from captain Matt Yager and goalie Adam Shute. That was the Q centre would see of Nanaimo goalie Charles Claxton who was pulled in favour of backup Mike DeGirolamo.
The Timbermen would cut the deficit to as low as 1 with 3 goals in approximately 3 minutes near the end of the second thanks to Nanaimo captain Brody Eastwood scoring his first goal since Game #1. Eastwood’s power play goal wasn’t the last in the second though. Tyson Gibson got one last goal with 35 seconds in the period to make it 9-7 Shamrocks heading into the third.
Casey Jackson and Tyson Gibson each scored another goal in the third to make it 11-7. Besides Jon Philips scoring 12:45 into the third, the Shamrocks shut down Nanaimo in the final frame and now lead the series 2 games to 1. It was a great night for Jackson who finished with 5 goals and 1 assist and was named the first star. Gibson scored his first trick since July 29th versus Maple Ridge and his 5 points have been his best performance so far in the playoffs. Jesse King and Rob Hellyer each added a goal and 3 assists to the team as well. The second star of the game was Adam Shute who stopped 41 of 49 shots for his 3rd win in his last 4 starts.