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Shamrocks Chris Wardle, Jesse King and Tyson Gibson celebrating a goal. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall

The Victoria Shamrocks are hosting the Nanaimo Timbermen tonight at The Q Centre for Game 1 of their first-round Western Lacrosse Association playoff series. It has been 61 years the teams last met in the playoffs, since 1957.

The Shamrocks finished the regular season in second place with a record of 12-6, while the Timbermen finished third going 10-7-1.

The series may come down to the skill and savvy of veteran talent on the Shamrocks versus the creative energy and enthusiasm of the youthful Timbermen.

The Shamrocks scored 196 goals during the regular season, 30 more than Nanaimo managed. In the process Nanaimo has a slightly better defensive record with just eight less goals scored against 162 versus 156.

On paper, the Shamrocks have the edge with more offensive talent and depth, however, Nanaimo did manage to defeat Victoria once this season, by keeping the talents of Jesse King, Casey Jackson, Rhys Duch, Chris Wardle and company from playing their offensive game.

Both teams were not spectacular on the road during the regular season, but Nanaimo was dreadful going 2-6-1, while Victoria’s home record was 7-2-0. They lost for the second time at home during the final game of the regular season, while resting some of their talent for the playoffs. Only New Westminster and Nanaimo had better home records than Victoria going 8-1-0.

Both teams will want to win tonight to establish a series lead early. Will the Shamrocks outgun the Timbermen or will the Timbermen manage to contain the Shamrocks? Game time is scheduled for 7:30 pm at The Q Centre.

They play in Nanaimo for Game 2 on Friday and Game 3 will be in Victoria on Sunday.

WLA

WLA Senior A

TEAM GP W L T PTS PCT GF GA PIM HOME AWAY
New Westminster 18 15 3 0 30 .833 225 158 329 8-1-0 7-2-0
Victoria 18 12 6 0 24 .667 196 162 293 7-2-0 5-4-0
Nanaimo 18 10 7 1 21 .583 166 156 230 8-1-0 2-6-1
Maple Ridge 18 9 8 1 19 .528 158 159 398 5-3-1 4-5-0
Langley 18 7 10 1 15 .417 183 205 339 6-2-1 1-8-0
Burnaby 18 6 11 1 13 .361 176 201 350 5-4-0 1-7-1
Coquitlam 18 2 16 0 4 .111 131 194 314 2-7-0 0-9-0

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