Thunder hit the road for first of three straight
Fresh off five consecutive home games, the Langley Thunder are set for the first road game since June 19 as they head over to Burnaby’s Bill Copeland Arena for a battle with the Burnaby Lakers.
It will be the second of three meetings between the two Western Lacrosse Association rivals, with the Thunder prevailing 8-6 back on June 29 at Langley Events Centre.
Langley saw their three-game win streak snapped in their most recent game, a 12-9 setback at the hands of the visiting Nanaimo Timbermen. On the other side of the floor, the Lakers aim to break their own three-game losing streak.
Both teams last game came against the same opponent: the Nanaimo Timbermen.
The Thunder found themselves tied at nine with under two minutes to play against Nanaimo on July 13 before the visiting Timbermen scored three goals in a 1:05 span for the 12-9 victory. Robert Church led Langley with four goals and an assist.
Burnaby also hosted Nanaimo with the Timbermen blowing open a one-goal game thanks to an eight-goal second period for the 15-7 victory on July 8. Laszlo Henning scoring a goal and four points in the defeat. Nanaimo blew the game open with an eight-goal second period.
Langley averages 9.8 goals per game while Burnaby is right behind at 9.1.
Dane Dobbie leads the Thunder with 5.6 points per game, which is second in the league, while Curtis Dickson’s 53 points are most among the Thunder. He is also third in the WLA at 4.8 points per game. Langley boasts a trio of 20-goal scorers in Dobbie (23), Dickson (21) and Church (20).
For the Lakers, Ryan Martel is fifth in points per game at 4.4 with 15 goals and 31 points in seven games. Toron Eccleston leads all Burnaby players in goals (19) and points (33).
Frank Scigliano has handled the bulk of the duties in goal for Langley and has a 9.36 goals against average and an .815 save percentage. His save percentage ranks him second in the WLA while his GAA is third among eligible goaltenders.
Steve Fryer has played in one game so far, stopping 43 of 50 shots (.860) with a GAA of 7.00.
On the other side, Zak Boychuk has an 11.33 GAA and .777 save percentage while playing the bulk of the Lakers minutes.
Langley has the advantage in terms of both power play and penalty kill percentages.
The Thunder have scored on exactly half of their man-advantage opportunities (28-for-56) while Burnaby sits fifth at .368 (21-for-57). The Lakers have also allowed 10 short-handed goals, second most in the league. On the penalty kill, Langley is third best, successfully killing off 30 of the 50 penalties they have taken (.600). The Lakers PK checks in at No. 5, allowing 24 goals on 54 chances, a .579 success rate.
Burnaby also leads the league in penalty minutes, averaging nearly 19 minutes (18.8) per game. The Thunder average the second fewest among the seven teams with 12.7 penalty minutes per game.
With the score tied at six and less than half a period to play, Dickson and Thomas Vaesen scored goals 66 seconds apart to send Langley to the 8-6 victory.
The Thunder penalty kill came up with a huge kill to end the game after receiving a pair of major penalties in the final five minutes.
Dickson finished with four goals and six points for the Thunder while Eccleston had a hat trick and four points for the Lakers.