Scigliano shines as Thunder win third straight

by Gary Ahuja

Frank Scigliano makes one of his 39 saves as the Langley Thunder defeated the Coquitlam Adanacs 9-4 on Wednesday night at Langley Events Centre. Ryan Molag LEC photo

A sensational effort from goaltender Frank Scigliano helped backstop the Langley Thunder to a third straight victory.

Scigliano made 39 saves – including 20 in the second period alone – to earn first star honours as the Thunder defeated the Coquitlam Adanacs 9-4 in Western Lacrosse Association action on Wednesday night at Langley Events Centre. The Thunder improved to 4-1 on the season while the Adanacs remain winless at 0-5.

For the season, Scigliano is allowing less than five goals per game (4.94) while also boasting a .895 save percentage.

“They had a lot of quality looks and Frank played phenomenal. They had a lot of open looks and at the doorstep, he played exceptional,” said Thunder coach Curt Malawsky.

“Our defence is a work in progress; we are making some mistakes – hopefully we will clean those up and not make the same ones over and over again,” he said. “But it wasn’t from a lack of effort; it is just learning the systems and key situations on the floor. But I thought Frank was the reason it was only four goals.”

Langley trailed just once in the game, at 1-0, but the Coquitlam lead lasted less than two minutes as the Thunder responded with goals six seconds apart, the first from Dane Dobbie, and the latter courtesy of Nathan Bell, who won the face-off, took the ball to the net and gave his team the lead for good.

Bell leads the league in face-off percentage (50-20, .714) has two career WLA goals, both of which have come against the Adanacs.

“As soon as I saw both their players drop back on the forward, I knew straight away that I was going for it. I noticed that they locked off both players and that left me a perfect little slot to throw that ball,” he said of the play which unfolded in front of him.

Keegan Bell made it 3-1 before the Adanacs answered back before the intermission for a 3-2 lead. Connor Robinson and Dobbie tallied the only goals of the middle stanza to make it 5-2 and the Adanacs were unable to get the deficit below three the rest of the way.

Robert Church (2+3) scored twice in the final period to cap off his five-point night and second star selection, while Curtis Dickson (1+3) and Jake Boudreau (1+1) also added goals.

Malawsky did say the team needs to work on their composure, citing the second period as an example, while adding they did a much better job of that in the final frame.

“I think we get a little upset with things we can’t control. Maybe the referee calls the odd mistake here and there … the frustration of the ball not going in the net; we just have to stick with that process that I preach about five minutes at a time. Just grind,” he said. 

“It is going to be a good lesson for us down the stretch as the season goes along here. We have to learn from that.”

Coquitlam’s Clark Walter was the game’s third star and both he and Maurice Kelly had a goal and two assists, while goaltender Andrew Gallant finished with 39 saves on 48 shots.

Next up for the Thunder is a road game in Burnaby on Friday (June 16) against the Lakers at Bill Copeland Arena. Game time is 7:30pm.