The bantam Lakers sustained their first loss of the Mid-Island Hockey League season on Nov. 19 at the Cowichan Lake Sports Arena against the Duncan C1 team.
Tied through most of the third period 5-5, Duncan snuck two goals past Lake Cowichan in the game’s dying minutes to secure the victory with a 7-5 win.
Lakers head coach, Calvin Convery was impressed with his team’s effort and was hopeful next time his squad will pull through.
“It was a good game,” he said.
“I think we ran out of steam is what happened we spent a lot of time in the penalty box and that burnt our legs out.”
Convery credited the loss to a “defensive breakdown.” At several points in the game, the Lakers gave up three-on-one and two-on-one odd-man rushes, leaving Lake Cowichan netminder, Justin Fournier, hung out to dry on several occasions.
“They got around our forwards and defence and got some good shots on Justin Fournier,” Convery added.
Doing an ample of amount of penalty killing in the first period didn’t help the Lakers cause either. The Lakers did pick up the pace in the second period but the effort was not enough in the end.
Tyler Heita was a bright spot for the Lakers, scoring four out of his team’s five goals in the afternoon bout versus Duncan.
“He had a really good game. He was determined to help us out. Tyler was on his own yesterday,” explained Convery.
Convery noted that the Lakers other dynamic goal-scorer, Cale Mackie, was still out serving a suspension for a past roughing offence.
For Convery, defence was a major issue in the weekend loss.
“We needed to focus more on defence. The forwards are trying to push the puck forward and are forgetting about our defencemen.”
Following a win against Cowichan Valley 4 the next day on Nov. 20, Lake Cowichan has improved to 3-1 on the season.
The bantam Lakers next home game is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. on Dec. 3 versus Nanaimo.