Langley looks to avenge earlier loss to Salmonbellies
For the second time this season, the Langley Thunder are set to welcome the New Westminster Salmonbellies to Langley Events Centre as they play tonight (Saturday, July 9) at 7:30pm.
The teams previously played on June 26 with Salmonbellies goaltender Zach Higgins earning first star honours following his 59-save performance in a 9-6 win. But since that game, New Westminster has lost two of their past three games to see their record fall to 4-7 and fifth place in the Western Lacrosse Association.
On the other side, Langley has put together consecutive victories, with the common theme in both games being stellar goaltending and solid defensive play as they held the Burnaby Lakers and Maple Ridge Burrards each to six goals with an 8-6 win in the first game and then an offensive explosion in the latter as the Thunder struck for 14 goals in the third period for the 19-6 victory.
Haiden Dickson has been impressive so far this season as the top pick in the WLA Junior Draft leads all WLA players with 23 goals while teammate Mitch Jones is tied for second in the league with 21 goals. Dickson, Jones and Jordan McBride (15 goals, 20 assists) are the team’s top three scorers with 39, 38 and 35 points, respectively.
And while the ‘Bellies rely on those two up front, the Thunder have an impressive offensive arsenal on both sides of the net.
The right-side is anchored by veterans Curtis Dickson and Robert Church while Dane Dobbie and Connor Robinson have been filling the net from the left-side.
Dickson sits second in the league with 43 points and Dobbie is fifth at 39 while Dobbie is also second in points per game (5.6) and Dickson tied for fourth (4.8) with Jones.
The Thunder have also received solid contributions from a trio of rookies with Chase Scanlan and Erik Maas on the right side and Thomas Vaesen on the left. Vaesen has eight goals and 20 points while Scanlan has 13 goals and 17 points and Maas has six goals and 14 points.
Since joining the Thunder in the season’s third game, Frank Scigliano has played the last seven games, posting an 8.94 goals against average and an .820 save percentage, both of which are good for second place among WLA goaltenders.
Zach Higgins leads the WLA in total saves with 488 and is fourth with an .809 save percentage while playing in all 11 New Westminster games so far this season, being on the floor for 633:57 of the 660 total minutes his team has played.
The Thunder power play is the only one in the league which is cashing in on more than half their chances, converting at a .522 success rate with 24 goals on 46 chances. New Westminster is at the other end of the spectrum with just 13 goals on 41 chances, a .317 rate. Conversely, the Salmonbellies do boast the top-ranked penalty kill as they have allowed 14 goals on 49 chances, a .714 rate. Langley’s penalty kill checks in at third in the league at .590 (16 goals on 39 chances).
Both Dobbie and Church are tied for third with seven power-play goals.
Tessa Beauchamp Jersey Night
The game will also serve as a fundraiser as Langley is wearing specially-designed game-worn jerseys with 100 per cent of the proceeds benefitting the Tessa Beauchamp Foundation. In-person bids may be submitted until the close of the second intermission. For those who are at the game and have a winning bid, they will receive the jersey from the player on the turf following the game.