By Gary Rennie
Lots of shots, not enough went in.
After a 12-day break, the LaSalle Vipers lost 4-3 to the last-place St. Marys Lincolns Wednesday at the Vollmer Complex.
“We didn’t do anything that we talked about doing,” said head coach John Nelson.
On the other hand, the Lincolns came up with the kind of desperate effort you see in teams at this time of the season when they’re fighting just to get a playoff spot, Nelson added.
Maybe the gap between games had something to do with it, Nelson added. “We’ll just have to learn from it.”
The Vipers outshot the Lincolns 37-14 overall, including a 14-3 edge in the third period. But two of the Lincolns’ shots went in early in the third for a 4-2 lead.
Colton Krzeminski narrowed the gap with a goal about mid-way through the third, but that’s as close as the Vipers would get despite a desperate push to tie-it up, including almost two minutes with the goalie Jackson Bernard pulled for the extra attacker.
The Lincolns took a 1-0 lead on a shorthanded goal by Blair Butchart about six minutes into the game. Matt Carvalho tied it up with three minutes left in the first period.
And Aaron Shaw gave the Vipers a 2-1 lead just past the midway point of the second. But in the final second of the second period, the Lincolns scored on a power play to even it up.
Nelson praised the effort of the team’s fourth line (Krzeminski, Carvalho, Stephane Crevier), who contributed two of the three goals. “They played hard, they finished checks, they did everything we asked.”
Nelson thought the team needed the same effort for 60 minutes from all four lines.
The Vipers were 0-6 on power play chances. The Vipers’ top scorer, A.J. Ryan, wasn’t in the lineup due to vacation plans.