The Kelowna Raiders have the early edge in the battle for Canada’s oldest lacrosse trophy.
The Raiders beat the hometown Kamloops Rattlers 12-10 on Wednesday night in the opening game of the Thompson Okanagan Senior Lacrosse League’s Shaw Cup final.
Goaltender Graham Cousins was solid in the Kelowna goal making 36 saves, while Victor Wiens set the tone for a strong defensive effort by the Raiders.
Wiens was also dangerous on offence scoring a hat-trick, while Jordan Innes, Nick Evans and Matt Gorges tallied two goals apiece. Braden Renner, Pho Heng and Joe Brown added singles as the Raiders got the jump in the best-of-three final series.
“It was a really good road win for us,” said Raiders coach Doug Manning. “We had strong goaltending from Graham and we had a number of guys, including Victor, who really stepped up for us.”
Riley Donahue and Derek Swan paced the Rattlers with three goals apiece.
Each team was without a key player for Game 1 as Ryan Sage of the Raiders had other commitments, while top scorer A.J. Lockwood was out of
Game 2 in the best-of-three will be played Friday night at Memorial Arena in Kelowna.
Face off is 8 p.m.
A third game, if needed, will be played Sunday in Kamloops.