Salmonbellies back in second place

The New Westminster lacrosse club was forced to come back to edge Coquitlam at home last week.

The New Westminster Salmonbellies took over sole possession of second place in the Western Lacrosse Association following a 9-7 win at home over the Coquitlam Adanacs.

The senior A Salmonbellies led 6-2 midway through the contest and then weathered a five-goal hailstorm from the visiting A’s before eking out the victory in the final 10 minutes of the game at Queen’s Park Arena on Thursday.

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Third star Colton Clark got the ’Bellies off to a strong start, scoring back-to-back markers midway through the opening period before notching his hat-trick counter four minutes into the middle frame to put New West up by three goals.

Jordan McBride potted his team-leading 22nd goal of the season at the midway mark of the second period, but less than a minute later Coquitlam rallied with five-goal run that gave Coquitlam its only lead of the game six minutes into the final period.

Carson Barton was the main man for the A’s, scoring three times and assisting on Vincent Ricci’s game-tying goals on an early third-period power play.

But Keegan Bal re-injected life back into the New West attack, knotting the score at 7-7, setting up Patrick Miles for two unassisted counters less than three minutes apart that stood up as the game-winning goals.

Eric Penney was not to be faulted for the Adanacs’ second-period turnaround, stopping 51 shots in the New West cage, while putting up a 0.879 save percentage in the game.

Adam Shute came on in relief of starter Dan Lewis and made 41 stops for Coquitlam.

Logan Schuss led New Westminster, claiming the fourth first star this season and league-leading eighth star recognition of the year, while topping the club with a goal and four assists.

New West takes on Maple Ridge, with a season series on the line, on Tuesday. The Salmonbellies then entertain the first-place Victoria Shamrocks at Queen’s Park Arena on Thursday. Game time is 7:45 p.m.

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