Just when the Victoria Shamrocks appeared to grab some momentum, the Maple Ridge Burrards snatched it away.
So it went for much of game 3 in the Western Lacrosse Association championship final, won 14-11 in overtime by the visiting Burrards, who took a 2-1 series lead on Sunday at The Q Centre.
The Shamrocks had no answer for Burrards goaltender Frankie Scigliano in the 10-minute, non-sudden death overtime period. At the other end, Maple Ridge attackers Ben McIntosh at 5:56, and Mike Mallory at the 8:21 mark slipped past the Rocks defenders to give their team an 13-11 lead and forced the Shamrocks to lift goalie Cody Hagedorn for the extra attacker.
A broken-up play in the Burrards end saw Zack Porter heave the ball up floor to a streaking Colton Porter, who bagged an empty netter at 8:48 that sent fans streaming to the exits.
Visiting teams have won all three games so far in the series, which shifts to Maple Ridge for game 4 on Tuesday then returns to Colwood on Wednesday (7:45 p.m.) for game 5.
The Shamrocks, who opened up a 5-0 lead in the first period before Maple Ridge scored the first of three shorthanded goals on the night, let the Burrards back into the game slowly but steadily. It was 5-1 after one and 8-6 after 40 minutes. While the Shamrocks never trailed in regulation, they failed to put the Burrards away when they had the chance.
Late in the third period, when goals by Rhys Duch and Corey Small 26 seconds apart gave the locals a 11-9 lead with barely two minutes to go, the Burrards stormed back. Mallory tallied in a four-on-four situation at the 18:42 mark, then Dan Taylor knotted the score with 30 seconds left, beating Hagedorn down low.
The Shamrocks took a timeout out and had possession of the ball for much of the remaining time, and fired two quality shots at Scigliano, who stood tall in the net to keep the ball out.
The loss spoiled a stellar performance by the Shamrocks’ Jeff Shattler, who racked up four goals before the game was half over and finished with five points. Small and Cory Conway led the attack with a goal and six assists each, while Duch scored twice and Cole Pickup, Chris Wardle and Ethan Garland had singles.
Taylor was top man for the Burrards, totalling four goals and four helpers for eight points.Riley Loewen had three goals and Mallory and McIntosh two each. Connor Goodwin, Lyndon Knutilla had the other Maple Ridge goals.
Scigliano finished with 40 saves on 51 shots, while Hagedorn turned aside 43 of 56 Burrards shots.
If necessary, game 6 would be played in Maple Ridge on Friday, with game 7 if needed back at The Q Centre on Sunday night at 6 p.m.