Game Preview: Showdown in the Swamp

by Gary Ahuja

The Langley Thunder kick off the back-half of their schedule with a visit to Burnaby and a showdown with the Lakers at the Bill Copeland Arena.

The game goes tonight (Friday, June 28) with a 7:30pm start time.


The Thunder are coming off an 8-6 home loss to the Nanaimo Timbermen on June 26 with the defeat snapping Langley’s two-game winning streak while Burnaby has suffered three straight losses, the most recent being a 9-5 setback at home at the hands of the Victoria Shamrocks.

Each team enters the game with three victories with Langley sporting a 3-6 record while the Lakers are at 3-4, each tied for fifth place in the Western Lacrosse Association standings with six points, but only two points back of a share of third place.

It will also be the second head-to-head meeting for the two clubs, both of which have been in Burnaby. The teams met back on May 31 with Chase Scanlan scoring five in an 11-9 Thunder loss. Thomas Vela led the Lakers that night with a hat trick and six points.

Langley’s most recent game saw the Thunder held to just two goals over the final 42 minutes in the loss to Nanaimo. Scanlan – who leads Langley in goals (17) and points (32) had a hat trick and five points in the defeat, while goaltender Aden Walsh finished with 39 saves on 46 shots.

One statistic the Thunder lead the WLA in is face-offs as Langley has gone 121-70, a .634 winning percentage, with the majority of those coming courtesy of Matt Abbott. Abbott has won 103 of the 163 face-offs he has taken, the most won by one player and the second-highest percentage among those who have taken more than 10 draws.

The Lakers have three players tied atop the leaderboard in team scoring with Ben McDonald, Jacob Dunbar and Vela each having 27 points on the season.

In terms of special teams, the Thunder sit fourth on both the power play (.375) and penalty kill (.649) while Burnaby is sixth while playing a man down (.556) and seventh on the power play (.314).