By Sam Laskaris

It was yet another promising week for the Brooklin Lacrosse Club. A night after rallying from an early-three goal deficit to edge the Owen Lacrosse Club, Brooklin pulled out another W on Thursday, edging the Oakville Rock 12-11 in a Major Series Lacrosse (MSL) Classic contest.

Thursday’s tilt was the final one for the five-week Classic, which featured five out of the six MSL franchises. All matches were staged at the Toronto Rock Athletic Centre in Oakville. With Thursday’s win, Brooklin finished off the tournament with an impressive 7-1 record.

“Two hard games in two nights,” said Brad MacArthur, who pulls double duty as Brooklin’s head coach and general manager. “(Tuesday) was a little bit more of a come back and win and this one was hold on to win. We're pretty happy to finish 7-1 and have this group of kids succeed.”

Brooklin led by as many as four goals (9-5) in the third quarter of Thursday’s tilt. But with just under three minutes remaining in the contest Oakville had deadlocked the score at 11-11.

Ty Thompson, one of Brooklin’s first-round picks from the 2020 MSL Entry Draft, netted the winning goal via a perfectly executed two-on-one play with Jake Fox with 34.3 seconds remaining in the game.Thompson’s winning goal was his third of the game and marked the second time that he registered a hat trick in the Classic. Thomspon, who commuted from his Ottawa home to suit up for Brooklin, appeared in four tournament games and earned 16 points (eight goals and eight assists) in those appearances. “I thought he did a bang-up job in every game that he played,” MacArthur said.

The Classic certainly served its purpose, at least for Brooklin team officials. The squad utilized 45 different players during the tourney. “We were trying to get everybody floor time, evaluate depending on their schedules, get in a lot of our young guys that we hadn’t seen and sprinkle in some veterans,” MacArthur said. “We didn’t want to overload one lineup and underload another. We wanted to give them a chance to compete every night.”

With Thursday’s setback, the Rock concluded the Classic with a 2-6 record. The Cobourg Kodiaks ended up in second place in the standings via their 5-3 record. Meanwhile, Owen Sound and the Six Nations Chiefs ended up with identical 3-5 marks. The three-time defending MSL and Mann Cup champion Peterborough Lakers opted not to participate in the Classic.

Despite Brooklin’s successes in the tournament, MacArthur is cognizant these results will not necessarily guarantee future triumphs if the pandemic allows the MSL to return to regular season and playoff action in 2022.

“We’re pretty realistic too,” he said. “The other teams have draft picks too. There’s depth and there’s a lot of games that were close. Early games we kind of ran away with a few. We’re happy but we’re realistic other teams have stuff in the bank too.”

Besides Thompson, MacArthur was impressed with a handful of other of the team’s recent draft picks throughout the tournament and singled out Jonathan Donville, Justin Inacio and goaltender Nick Damude for their efforts. 

Besides Thompson’s three goals, Brooklin also saw two-goal performances from Ryan Keenan, Chris Boushy and Kyle Waters on Thursday. Austin Murphy, Adam Perroni and Fox provided singles.