Thunder, Timbermen set for round 3
The two longest current-winning streaks are on the line as the Nanaimo Timbermen visit the Langley Thunder.
At stake are the Timbermen’s four-game winning streak and the Thunder’ three-game winning streak as the two Western Lacrosse Association teams meet at Langley Events Centre tonight (Wednesday, July 13) at 7:00pm.
Nanaimo sits third in the WLA at 8-5 while Langley is fourth at 6-4 in the third and final regular season meeting between the two teams. The Thunder took each of the previous two contests, winning 10-9 in Nanaimo on June 11 and then 8-6 four nights later in Langley to take both ends of the home-and-home series.
But since that defeat, the Timbermen have reeled off six wins in their past seven games while Langley lost their next three before bouncing back to win their latest three games.
Steve Fryer made his Thunder debut, stopping 43 of 50 shots in a 9-7 win over New Westminster on July 9. Dane Dobbie led the offence with five goals and seven points while Connor Robinson had a pair of goals and five points. Curtis Dickson finished with five assists.
Nanaimo needed overtime with Teioshontateh scoring the winner in a 10-9 victory over Maple Ridge. Jon Phillips and Nick Finlay each scored twice Charles Claxton stopped 34 of 43 shots.
Both teams are stingy when it comes to surrendering goals with Nanaimo ranked second (8.69) and the Thunder third (9.60) in terms of goals allowed per game.
Each team has a strong goaltending tandem with Langley’s Frank Scigliano and Steve Fryer on one side and Charles Claxton and Devlin Shanahan on the other.
Frank Scigliano sits second in save percentage at .820 and third in goals against average at 8.93, just .002 behind Claxton, who leads all WLA goalies with an 8.92 goals against average and is also fourth in save percentage at .808.
Fryer has a 7.00 GAA and .860 save percentage in his lone appearance while Shanahan has suited up in a pair of games for Nanaimo since joining the team and has a 9.00 GAA and .783 save percentage.
Dickson (20 goals, 28 assists) and Dobbie (22 goals, 24 assists) continue to be the catalysts of the Thunder offence. Dobbie was named the JM Media’s Player of the Week on Monday following a monster two games which saw him rack up 19 points.
He is tied for third in goals and is second in points per game at 5.8.
Dickson in second in the league in assists and third in points as well as third in points per game 4.8).
Phillips leads the Timbermen in goals (22), assists (27) and points (49) and fourth in the league in assists while his teammate, Taggart Clark, is fifth with 26. Phillips is also tied for fourth in goals.
The Thunder power play came up empty in their most recent game, but still leads the league with a .490 efficiency percentage with 24 goals on 49 chances while their penalty kill ranks fourth, allowing 18 goals on 45 chances, a .600 success rate. The Nanaimo penalty kill sits fourth (25 goals allowed on 63 chances, .603) while their power play is third (24-for-59, .407).
When factoring in all special teams goals scored and allowed, Langley leads the WLA at +10 while Nanaimo is at -2.
Phillips leads all WLA players with 11 power-play goals.
This is the third and final regular season between the two clubs with Langley winning both times. The first victory was 10-9 in Nanaimo on June 11 when Dickson scored the winner with 15 seconds to play. The teams met four nights later in Langley with the Thunder winning 8-6 behind five-point games from Robert Church (three goals, two assists) and Dickson (one goal, four assists).