The Victoria Shamrocks and the Maple Ridge Burrards battled tooth and nail on Friday night in Game 1 of the WLA Championship series. The game sets the tone for what could be a long, drawn-out affair to crown a WLA champion. The Shamrocks got the winner from Connor Robinson 4:31 into the 5th period.
Ryan McLean was the one to get the party started for the Shamrocks to open the scoring at 4:40 of the 1st. Maple Ridge would then go on to strike for 3 consecutive markers to finish off the 1st.
Early in the 2nd period, Chris Wardle notched his first of 4 straight goals between the 2nd and 3rd periods. With the Shamrocks leading 6-4 in the 3rd, Maple Ridge got goals from Ryan Keenan and Dane Dobbie with just 1:39 to play in regulation, sending Game 1 to OT.
After a scoreless 10:00 minute overtime period, the contest shifted to sudden death in period 5 where Robinson would eventually send Shamrocks nation home in a frenzy.
Both Frank Scigliano for the Burrards and Peter Dubenski for the Shamrocks were stellar in goal during game 1. Dubenski took home 1st-star honours after stopping 41 of 47, while Scigliano was the games 2nd star after stopping 45 of 52.
Victoria was 1 for 3 with the man-advantage, while the penalty kill unit was a perfect 3 for 3 against the potent Burrards attack.
The scene will not shift to the lower mainland for game 3 on Sunday night from Maple Ridge. Game 3 of the best of 7 affair is set for 6:30 on Tuesday evening back at the Q Centre.