The S&B General Contractors Cowichan Rats fell just short of sweeping a home-and-home series against the Victoria Jokers this week.
After a lopsided 12-2 win at the Cowichan Arena on Saturday, the Rats were edged 8-7 at the Archie Browning Arena on Tuesday by the Jokers, the last-place team in the Victoria Senior Lacrosse League.
Pete Vanden Dungen scored five goals and added four assists in the win at home, while Ryan King collected five helpers. Nick Prangley (two goals and two assists), Wes Morris (two goals and one assist), Dylan Dewarle (one goal and two assists), Kyle Kaltiainen (one goal and one assist), Tyler Clint (one goal and one assist), Brent Collett (three assists) and Kyle Patterson (one assist) also got on the scoresheet.
Kevin Smith made 23 stops in the Cowichan net, while Jim Blackwood turned aside 53 shots in the Jokers’ end.
Coming on the heels of Saturday’s decisive victory, Tuesday’s game felt worse than a one-goal loss for the Rats, who struggled to put things together at either end of the floor.
“We should be disgusted with ourselves,” veteran defender Kevin Manahan said.
Dewarle led the way with three goals and three assists and rang the ball off the post behind Blackwood on several occasions. Curt Gailey scored twice, Vanden Dungen had a goal and one assist, and Morris had one goal and one helper. The Rats again outshot the Jokers, this time by a 38-29 final count.
The Rats have one regular-season game left as they host the Wsanec Arrows at the Cowichan Arena this Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
Cowichan opens the playoffs at home on June 22, also against the Arrows, the last chance to catch the Rats in Duncan this year as all remaining playoff games will take place in Esquimalt.