Merchants Defeated By Host Six Nations Rivermen

June 23, 2019

By Sam Laskaris

The Merchants Lacrosse Club had an opportunity to make things rather close in the Ontario Series Lacrosse (OSL) standings on Sunday afternoon.

But the Oshawa-based Merchants were unable to do that, dropping a 10-5 decision to the host Six Nations Rivermen.

The match was held in the Gaylord Powless Arena, located in the Six Nations community of Ohsweken.

With the loss the Merchants saw their record fall to 6-5. Six Nations’ mark improved to 8-3.

A victory would have moved the Merchants, at least temporarily, into a three-way tie for second place in the league standings with the Rivermen and the 7-3 Owen Sound North Stars, who were scheduled to play later Sunday night against the host Oakville Titans.

The defending league champion Titans were leading the OSL standings with a 9-2 mark heading into their contest versus the North Stars.

Merchants’ general manager Brad MacArthur was not thrilled with his club’s opening 20 minutes against the Rivermen. Six Nations led 5-1 after the first period.

“I’m disappointed how we lost, not because we lost,” MacArthur said. “I hate giving up a first period like that.”

MacArthur said all of the Merchants were to blame for the team’s first-period efforts.

“We had a slow start all-around,” he said, adding Merchants’ goalie Lukas Coote did not have a solid period while also pinning the blame on the team’s defence and offence.

MacArthur was encouraged though by the fact the Merchants were for the most part able to keep pace with the Rivermen during the final two periods. Six Nations outscored the Merchants 5-4 in those two frames.

The Merchants did not have some reliable regulars in their lineup. But MacArthur was not using that as an excuse.

“Even if we were short some key guys, we had the tools to win that game,” he said.

Five different players ended up scoring for the Merchants. They were Liam Osborne, Trent Boyd, Jeremy McWatters, Jon Leclerc and Jeff Fernandes.

Despite the loss, on a positive note, the Merchants are still comfortably in fourth place in the OSL standings, six points up on the fifth-place Ennismore James Gang. The top four finishers advance to post-season play.

The Merchants have five games remaining in their regular season schedule while Ennismore has four outings left.

The Merchants and Rivermen will square off again later this week. But this time that match, which will be on Friday, will be staged at the Merchants’ home rink.

Game time at Children’s Arena on Oshawa is scheduled for 7 p.m.