It’s playoff time in the Western Lacrosse Association, time for the best of the best to shine. And although we’ve had just 3 playoff games to date, there’s been plenty of shining. Langley’s off to a 2-0 lead in its series against Burnaby and Coquitlam opened its series against Victoria with a win. And in those 3 games, we’ve seen the offensive studs do their thing and a usual suspect on defense do his thing. We’ve got plenty of playoffs ahead of us in the WLA for 2012 but for this first week of the postseason, ILIndoor’s 3 Stars kicks off with a pair of forwards and a goalie who are simply doing what they do best.
First star, Lewis Ratcliff, Langley: That Ratcliff is scoring goals is no surprise, but the pace of which he’s doing it and the kind of goals he’s scoring are nothing short of superb. In Langley’s 2 playoff victories, he’s got 8 goals and 4 assists for 12 points and 5 of his goals have come on the power play, 3 of them in Game 1. He’s credited with the game-winner in each of the games, he’s shooting 32% and you can throw in a short-handed marker for good measure. No doubt, he’s in beast mode for the playoffs.
Second star, Nick Rose, Coquitlam: It’s almost automatic with this goalie, isn’t it? The WLA’s regular-season leader in goals-against average and save percentage is doing the same thing in the playoffs. He made 48 saves in Coquitlam’s Game 1 victory over Victoria, 21 of them coming in the first period to set the tone in his own end and let the Shamrocks know just what they’re up against.
Third star, Garrett Billings, Langley: Work duties kept him in the East for much of the summer as he carded just 6 games in the regular season. But he’s been in the lineup for both playoff games, both wins, and has notched 1 goal and 7 assists for 8 points in those games. Langley is a team with plenty of offensive options, but throwing Billings into the mix makes the Thunder that much more dangerous. Consider: The Thunder are 7-1 this season when he’s in the lineup.Chavez is an avid lacrosse player in Rochester and a journalist for the Democrat and Chronicle as well as a longtime Inside Lacrosse contributor. Email him at email@example.com or go to RochesterSports.com.
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