Slow Start Proves Costly For Merchants Against Host North Stars

By Sam Laskaris

A slow start proved costly for the Merchants Lacrosse Club on Saturday.

The Merchants hit the road and squared off against the Owen Sound North Stars in an Ontario Series Lacrosse match, which was held at the Harry Lumley Bayshore Community Centre.

Owen Sound jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the opening period and then cruised to a 9-5 victory. With the loss, the Merchants saw their record fall to 5-4. And Owen Sound boosted its mark to 6-3.

The Merchants did dress a full roster of 18 runners for the game. But many of the club’s key regulars were unable to make the trip for various reasons.

Merchants’ captain Ryan Degerdon had an inkling his side might get off to a slow start. “It was a long bus ride up,” he said of the two-and-a-half hour trek to Owen Sound. “And in the warmups we weren’t hitting on all cylinders.”

To have a full roster the Merchants were forced to dress a pair of unaffiliated Junior B players from Brampton, Alex Kew and Austin Pope. 

Degerdon was not eager to pin the blame for the loss on the fact several of Brooklin’s key contributors were unavailable for the trip.  “I don’t want to use that as an excuse,” he said. “We have a talented team here and guys have to be ready to step up and play. We didn’t do that tonight.”

The Merchants were only able to score once in the opening 20 minutes of action and trailed 5-1 heading into the second period. “We just got off to a bad start,” said Merchants’ assistant coach Ryan Preston.

Things did get slightly better for the Merchants the rest of the way.  “We tightened right up in the second and outscored them in the third 3-2,” Preston said. “They didn’t give up. We just had that bad first period and fell into a hole.”

Rookie Tyler Goodchild led the Merchants’ offence as he scored twice and added an assist. Travis Getz, Jake Gilmour and Trent Boyd also scored for the visitors.

The Merchants are now off until this coming Friday when they hit the road again for a contest against the Ennismore James Gang. That match, at the Robert E. Young Recreation Complex, has a scheduled opening faceoff of 8 p.m.

The Merchants also have another away game, June 23, versus the Six Nations Rivermen before returning to play in their own rink. The club’s next home game is June 29 against Six Nations at Children’s Arena in Oshawa. Game time is 7 p.m.