The Cowichan Valley Thunder opened the junior B lacrosse season with a 15-5 drubbing of the Nanaimo Timbermen on the road last Saturday.
Their home opener on Tuesday didn’t go quite as well, as the Westshore Bears topped the Thunder 16-10 at Kerry Park Arena.
“They’re a good team,” assistant coach Traves Black admitted of the Bears. “But we just got a little frustrated. We didn’t play defence, and our offence wasn’t moving.”
Westshore held a 7-6 lead after two periods, but outscored Cowichan 9-4 in the third.
Taylor Martin led the Thunder with four goals and four assists. Tyson Black, Jacob Taylor and Brody Black each had a goal and two helpers, and Tyler Clint, Kyle Page and Kelvin Philp also scored.
Brody Black was one of four midget call-ups in the lineup as the Thunder dealt with the absences of Graham and Colin Winship, Adam Golia and Brandon Corby, who should all be in action soon.
“Those are four junior A quality players,” Traves Black said.
Even with those players back in action, the Thunder are a young team.
“We have a lot to learn,” Black said. “We have great kids out there, but they are inexperienced. We had at least one kid out there [besides the midget call-ups] who I don’t think had ever played at this level before.”
The bulk of this year’s junior team was on the squad that won the provincial intermediate B title last year, so there is no shortage of talent.
“This is essentially the same team, but now they’re playing against 21-year-olds,” Black noted. “They need a little bit of experience.”
The Thunder will be at Kerry Park Arena this Saturday for a rematch against Nanaimo.