MERCHANTS EARN CONVINCING VICTORY AGAINST HOST CRUSHERS
By Sam Laskaris
The Merchants Lacrosse Club’s latest outing had three distinct elements – one for each period.
Once put all together those three features resulted in the Oshawa-based Merchants registering a convincing 14-5 road victory versus the Clearview Crushers in an Ontario Series Lacrosse (OSL) match held on Saturday.
The game against the Crushers, an expansion squad in the OSL this season, was staged at the Stayner Arena.
Despite playing their second road contest in as many nights, it was the Merchants who had a solid start, jumping out to a 5-1 lead after the opening period.
Merchants’ head coach Clancy Almas, however, was not pleased with the efforts from his charges in the second frame. The clubs scored three goals apiece in that period to give the Merchants an 8-4 edge heading into the final 20 minutes of action.
Almas said he had to give his charges a lecture during the second intermission about their sub-par efforts in the middle frame against the Crushers, who had four of their players and head coach unavailable for duty for the match as they were serving suspensions.
“They were obviously missing some pieces,” Almas said of the Crushers. “And we weren’t playing our game either.”
Almas was certainly pleased though with the way the Merchants closed out the match. For the most part they maintained their composure in the third period.
The same can’t be said for the Crushers who were assessed six minor penalties. The Merchants capitalized by scoring five powerplay goals in the period.
“We were running our systems and got our powerplay going,” Almas said. “They would take a penalty and we’d score. Then they’d take another one and we’d score again.”
The victory enabled the Merchants to take three out of four possible points during their lengthy back-to-back road trips.
One night earlier the Merchants had to settle for a single point, via their 7-7 overtime tie against the Owen Sound North Stars.
“It was good but not good enough,” Almas said of his club’s latest two performances. “We still have to be better.”
The Merchants are now sporting a 3-5-1 record. They are occupying fifth place in the standings of the six-squad OSL, one point behind the 4-7-0 Ennismore James Gang, who have played two games more than the Merchants.
Brady Kearnan led the Merchants’ offence against Clearview as he scored six goals.
“He was just shooting cannons,” Almas said. “He was ripping it. It looked like he was angry.”
Carson Rees also had a big night as he netted a hat trick while defender Matt Boissonneault scored twice. Also scoring for the Merchants were Luke Pilcher, Sean Westley and Keegan White.
The Merchants’ next outing is this coming Wednesday, June 29. They’ll host Ennismore in a game that will be staged at the Delpark Homes Centre in Oshawa.
The opening faceoff is set for 8 p.m.