Third place finish slipping away

— image credit: PHOTO SUBMITTED

Already assured of at least a fourth-place finish, the Delta Islanders had their eyes on climbing back into third in the B.C. Junior A Lacrosse League standings.

But a loss on Vancouver Island Sunday will likely leave the Isles a point shy of the Victoria Shamrocks when the regular season concludes next weekend.

Delta fell 13-9 to the fifth-place Nanaimo Islanders, falling to 11-9-0 (won-lost-tied) with one game to play. The Shamrocks are at 11-7-1 with two games remaining.

A hot goaltender was the difference in Nanaimo, as the Islanders fired 71 shots at Peter Dubenski compared to just 45 directed but the Timbermen at the Delta goal.

Chase Fraser scored Delta’s first four goals of the game, giving the visitors a 4-2 lead after 12 minutes to play. But at the first intermission, Nanaimo had pulled even at 5-5. Cody Nass netted the fifth Delta goal.

The Islanders fired 27 shots at Dubenski in the second period, but only

Jonathan Phillips and Spencer Stevens were able to scored. Nanaimo tallied four times to take a 9-7 advantage into the third period.

Phillips added another pair of goals to complete hit hat trick, while the Timbermen scored four more to extend their lead.

Philips added three assists to finish the game with seven points. Evan Messenger collected five helpers.

The loss left the Islanders a split of their two weekend games. On Saturday night at home in the Sungod Arena, they outshot the last-place Port Coquitlam Saints 65-38 and won 15-11.

Delta led 6-5 after one period and 10-9 after 40 minutes.

Fraser was again the leading goal scorer with five, adding two assists for a seven-point game. Phillips had a hat trick, while Cody Nass tallied two and earned a pair of helpers. Messenger, Spencer Bromley, Reece Callies,  Tyler Nett and Cory Takahara scored once each for Delta.

The Islanders close out the regular season against the sixth-place Langley Thunder (5-14-1) next Saturday at Sungod at 5 p.m.

They will likely play the Timbermen in a best-of-three quarterfinal series when the playoffs begin next week. The Islanders won two of three regular season games with Nanaimo, winning 18-12 and 11-9 at home before last Sunday’s loss.

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