Jacob Dunbar had a sock trick in the Burnaby Lakers’ 2023 WLA home opener at Bill Copeland Arena Friday night. But it was not enough, as the Maple Ridge Burrards overcame a 10-7 deficit in the third period for an 11-10 victory. The win snaps a 15-game losing streak for Maple Ridge (1-0) dating back to last season. Meanwhile, Burnaby ends a tough opening weekend at 0-2 to start the year.
Dunbar leads balanced scoring attack in the first period
The Burrards struck first, with Drew Andre finding the net just 57 seconds into the game. Burnaby responded with a three-goal run. Laszlo Henning (9:26), Ty Ewen (9:43), and Ben Stewart (12:48) put the Lakers up 3-1. Isaac Ngyou (14:22) pulled Maple Ridge within one before Dunbar (15:02) began his big night. After one period, Burnaby held a 4-2 lead.
Dunbar goes off in the second period
Ryan Jones (0:36), Dylan McIntosh (1:23), and Anthony Kalinich (4:32) gave the Burrards a 5-4 lead early in the second period. Mark Yingling (6:49) tied it up, but Jones added his second (7:17; extra attacker) for a 6-5 Maple Ridge lead. Dunbar’s second (8:03) tied it at 6, but two and a half minutes later Will Clayton made it 7-6 Burrards. That’s when Dunbar put the Lakers on his back, reeling off four straight goals (11:57; 17:18; 18:31 shorthanded; 19:57) to extend Burnaby’s lead to 10-7 after the second period.
Humphrey blanks Lakers in the third period
Maple Ridge opted to pull goaltender Joel Watson in favor of Brandon Humphrey to start the third period. The move paid off, as Humphrey stopped all 15 shots he faced in the final 20 minutes. The Burrards chipped away at Burnaby’s lead, with Mitchell Nolet (5:15 power play) and Garret Winter (7:47) cutting the deficit to 10-9. Jones then added his third and fourth goals of the night (9:52; 15:55 power play) to complete the comeback for Maple Ridge. For his late game efforts, Jones was given 1st Star of the game. Dunbar earned 2nd Star honors with his sock trick, and Humphrey’s perfect third period performance earned him the 3rd Star of the game.
Maple Ridge hosts the Victoria Shamrocks in their home opener tonight, while Burnaby plays at Victoria on Friday June 2.
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“Muffler” Mike Kostiuk was formally introduced to box lacrosse when he attended a New England Black Wolves game on a whim in 2016. Instantly hooked, he has since become an avid follower of the National Lacrosse League. Following the postponement of the 2019-2020 NLL season, he was offered the chance to share his wealth of statistical knowledge and unique insights with the lacrosse community at large. He cheerfully accepted, and currently serves as Edge of Philly’s correspondent for both the Albany FireWolves and New York Riptide.