The Power Rankings came out last week just before the Lakers and Chiefs had a showdown for top spot in the Major Series Lacrosse standings. Then Cody Jamieson went off on Peterborough, scoring 6 goals and 4 assists to lead Six Nations to a critical road win and unquestioned supremacy, for the time being, atop both the points standings and the Power Rankings. The 8-5 win that followed for Six Nations over Oakville may seem a bit unimpressive for the first-place club, but the Rock are no pushovers and it’s only natural to have a touch of a let-down after such an important win. The Chiefs keep on winning, but they’re used to that in the regular season. What they’re looking for this year is a trip to the Mann Cup in British Columbia. It’s going to be a while before we see whether they can pull that one off.
1 (2) Six Nations Chiefs 9-1-1
Last week: W16-11 Peterborough, W8-5 Oakville
This week: @ Brampton, vs Brooklin, @ KW
The Chiefs have played 37 periods this summer (12 games including one overtime). They’ve outscored their opponent in 23 of them and tied 6 of them. That’s right, the Chiefs have been outscored in only 8 of 37 periods all year, a winning percentage of over .700. That’s the kind of consistency that will give you a 9-1-1 record and a three-point lead over your nearest pursuers with a game in hand. At this point, it looks like the road to the Mann Cup will go through the Iroquois Lacrosse Arena.
2 (1) Peterborough Lakers 8-4
Last week: L16-11 Six Nations
This week: vs Oakville
The Lakers knew before the season started that their defence would be a work in progress. That’s to be expected when you lose over half of the defensive unit from your championship team the previous season. But they were working on ways to make the D better, even as it appeared that strides were being made by the new players drawing in to fill the floor time of the guys missing from last year. As it turns out, they found their help close to home, resigning veteran defensive leaders Chris White and Kyle Sorensen to return to the team.
3 (3) Brooklin Redmen 7-4-1
Last week: W13-10 (OT) KW
This week: @ Six Nations, @ Oakville, vs Brampton
The Redmen felt like they needed one more solid lefty forward to round out their attack for this year. They got him in Kyle Aquin, and he paid dividends immediately with a hat trick—including the tying goal in the third period and the first two goals in overtime—in his first game with the team.
4 (4) Kitchener-Waterloo Kodiaks 5-7-1
Last week: W9-6 Oakville, L13-10 (OT) Brooklin
This week: vs Six Nations
The Kodiaks had a chance to pull into a tie with Brooklin for third place and solidify their playoff chances. They had a 9-7 lead over the Redmen with five minutes to play. Then a combination of fatigue (they were playing for the second night in a row and had only 15 runners for much of the Wednesday game) and defensive lapses allowed Brooklin to come back and force overtime then control the extra frame. The margin between the elite teams and the rest of the league is narrowing and the Kodiaks are committed to making it disappear for them in the near future.
5 (5) Oakville Rock 2-8-1
Last week: L8-5 Six Nations, L9-6 KW
This week: @ Peterborough, vs Brooklin
GM Terry Sanderson and Head Coach Phil Sanderson talk a good game about being patient with this team, about not expecting to win right away but building a team that will be a contender in the long run. That’s important for a team with a swath of talented young players who are still learning how to play and win in Major Series Lacrosse. It’s also good for the team’s immediate growth that, for all the talk of patience, every loss grates on both Sandersons. The pair have to strike a fine balance between accepting that their will be losses and accepting a culture of losing. Their fiery natures and deep lacrosse natures are allowing them to pull off the balancing act so far.
6 (6) Brampton Excelsiors 2-9
Last week: Off
This week: vs Six Nations, @ Brooklin
The week off should leave the Excelsiors rested and healthy for the second half of the season in which they’ll need to turn things around and win most of their games if they hope to climb out of the bottom two and scratch and claw their way into a playoff position.
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