Last Night: St. Catharines locks up No. 1 seed heading into Presidents Cup semifinals

Six games in 5 days will tire out anyone but hey, this is the Presidents Cup. And a majority of the teams at the 2013 edition of this Senior B championship tournament in Kahnawake are in the same boat. And whether or not fatigue or resting regulars was a factor in St. Catharines losing last night for the first time in the tournament, the Saints still are the top seed heading into today’s semifinals. Before losing to host Kahnawake 8-6 in Friday’s nightcap, the Saints were 11-6 winners over Caughnawaga and that’s the victory that launched the Saints into the No. 1 slot. “We went from the best game we’ve played all tournament to the worst game,” St. Catharines coach Jeff Dowling told The St. Catharines Standard. “It’s really mixed feelings, we got it done when we wanted too but unfortunately when we had it wrapped up we didn’t show up against Kahnawake.”

And so today’s playoff round kicks off with No. 2 Caughnawaga taking on No. 3 Kahnawake, followed by St. Catharines against No. 4 Calgary. The winners advance to Sunday’s 3 p.m. title game, while the losers play Sunday at 11 a.m. for third place.

The Saints opened the tournament with a 15-6 win over Calgary, but Dowling points out how just a few days can make a big difference. St. Catharines did not have Steve Priolo, Ian Llord, Colin Boucher and Jay Thorimbert for that game on Monday, so Dowling hopes having them this time around will help offset the improvement he’s seen in Calgary’s goal all week long.

“They like to run. They’re a fast team,” explained Dowling. “They’re good on transition so our offence has to play responsibly.”

Caughnawaga and Kahnawake also played earlier this week with Caughnawaga taking a 16-10 victory on Tuesday.

Friday scores
St. Catharines 11, Caughnawaga 6 (box score)
Nanaimo 12, Capital Region 3 (box score)
Calgary 11, Onondaga 5 (box score)
Kahnawake 8, St. Catharines 6 (box score)

Saturday schedule
Nanaimo (1-4) vs. Onondga (1-4), 10 a.m.
No. 3 Kahanwake (4-2) vs. No. 2 Caughnawaga (5-1), 5 p.m.
No. 4 Calgary (3-3) vs. No. 1 St. Catharines (5-1), 8 p.m.

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 bob.chavez@nllinsider.com or go to RochesterSports.com.

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