Shooting Eagles find groove, break into win column

by Gary Ahuja

Shooting Eagles' Jake Foster (#33) and Dean Fairall (#6) celebrate one of their team's 13 goals in Sunday's 13-6 win over the Black Fish at Langley Events Centre. The pair combined for eight goals and 15 points in the win. Gary Ahuja Langley Events Centre photo

The Shooting Eagles Lacrosse Club avoided a one-goal game for the first time this season and in the process, also earned their first victory.

After being held off the scoresheet for the first dozen minutes on Sunday afternoon at Langley Events Centre, the Shooting Eagles took control the rest of the way, defeating the Black Fish Lacrosse Club 13-6 to kick of week 3 action of West Division action in the Langley Events Centre.

The win improves the Shooting Eagles to 1-2 while the Black Fish remain winless at 0-3.

Ryan Jensen and Toru Morimatsu gave the Black Fish a 2-0 lead but Dean Fairall and Jake Foster evened the score after a quarter and the Shooting Eagles would go ahead 5-4 at the half. The third quarter saw the Shooting Eagles extend their lead as they outscored their opponent 6-1 in that critical 15-minute stretch.

“Today, especially in the second half, we really found our groove. We knew when our offence started clicking, and our defence – especially with Brody back there in cage – we are going to be a hard team to beat when we are clicking on all cylinders,” Foster said.

Foster (four goals, four assists) and Fairall (four goals, three assists) each had four-goal games while Mark Yingling (one goal, four assists), Aidan Murphy (four assists) and Greg Lunde (one goal, four assists) also had multi-point games. Dylan Lacroix, Cole Christiaens and Declan Fitzpatrick rounded things out with a goal apiece.

Goaltender Brody Harris made 45 saves to earn the game’s second start for the Shooting Eagles with Foster netting first-star honours.

“He was the reason we were still in the game in the first (half). Great saves to keep us in it,” said Shooting Eagles coach Adam Smith.

With his team coming off a pair of one-goal losses, Smith said the team’s focus was on being sharper and concentrating on their own game, starting with the defensive side of the ball.

“Just worry about our defence first, worry about tightening up that first, then worry about the offence and do the things we have been trying to do. Don’t worry about the score, don’t worry about the other team,” he said. “They are going to be able to score goals .. they are a very talented group so just stick with the plan and let it fall in when it does.”

Black Fish goaltender Gordy Bowden made 46 saves on 59 shots to earn the third star.

“Gordy stood on his head, quite frankly. He was the reason why it was only a seven-goal loss. It could have been a lot worse than it was. He made some saves he shouldn’t have made,” said Black Fish coach Dave Pym.

Offensively, Jon Phillips was the top point-getter for the Black Fish with four assists while Ryan Jones and Nick Jensen each had a goal and two helpers and Liam Phillips and Jordan Roberts had a goal and an assist apiece.

Pym said the team needs to get some practice time and film work in so that they can right the ship.

“Right now, we are not operating very well. We have a lot of work to do,” he said.

Both teams are back in action on January 8 with the Shooting Eagles facing the Sea Spray Lacrosse Club at 1:00pm while the Black Fish battle the Grizzlies Lacrosse Club at 4:00pm.