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Jr. B Northmen claim West Conference title

August 3, 2017   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

The Orangeville Junior B Northmen clinched the Ontario Junior B Lacrosse League Western Conference title with a 7-6 win over the Six Nations Rebels on Sunday (July 30) night at the Alder Street arena.

The best-of-five final series went four games.

After taking the first game of the series 3-1 on July 22, the Northmen were ahead 2-0 after winning game two 10-8 on their home floor in Orangeville.

The Rebels were back in after taking an 11-8 win in game three to force the series to continue.

“Obviously we knew they are a very good lacrosse team. The only team they lost to this year was us,” said Northmen head coach Bruce Codd after the Sunday night win. “We knew that when we got up 2-0 it was going to be far from over. They are just too good of a lacrosse team that they weren’t going to quit. They showed that in game three when they came out and battled us really hard. I think we showed up (in game three) a little bit expecting to win instead of doing what we do to win which is work extremely hard in all areas. We knew it was going to tough to finish them.”

The final game saw the Rebels take a 3-1 lead in the first period, then extend that lead to 4-1 with a goal early in the second frame.

Orangeville’s Mike Sutton and Shane Hillis scored just under two minutes apart to close the gap but another Six Nations goal at the middle of the period left the Northmen trailing by two with ten minutes left on the clock.

The Northmen were back in when the finished the period with two fast goals from Cameron MacDonald and Nik Farrus and a goal from Parker Baile with 22 seconds left to put the O-ville team in the lead going into the final period of play.

Nik Farrus scored on a powerplay at 9:35 in the period to move the squad ahead by two goals.

Six Nations scored at 16:17 to make it a 7-6 game.

From there the Northmen worked on keeping the Rebels outside of the zone and took the game and the series for the Division title.

“We knew they were going to come at us hard in the third period and they did,” Codd said. “We found the big one on the powerplay and that was the difference. We needed that cushion. When you’ve only got a one goal lead all it takes is one stroke, but when you’re up by two you have a little more breathing room. That goal was big – it gave us a, ‘we might give up one but we wont’ give up two’ kind of mentality.”

In the late part of the game it was crucial for the Northmen to control the ball as much as they could.

“Ideally you don’t want it down in your end much because if someone loses it, they don’t have to go very far. We said, lets take care of it. If we get it deep lets do that, if not, lets just make sure we don’t turn it over and eat as much clock as we can. At the end we were able to take care of the ball and keep it out of the danger area.”

The Northmen will now face the Green Gaels out of Bowmanville for the OJBLL championship.

The Gaels are the Eastern Conference champions having won their final series over the Akwesasne Indians in five games.

         

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