Jr. ’Bellies begin playoffs against Isles

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The New Westminster Jr. Salmonbellies will begin their pursuit of the Minto Cup at Queen’s Park Arena on Wednesday.

The ’Bellies completed the B.C. Junior A Lacrosse League regular season by stomping the visiting Victoria Shamrocks 14-6 Sunday. New West finished in first at 20-1-0 and will face the fourth-place Delta Islanders (12-9-0), the only team to beat the Salmonbellies, in a best-of-five league semifinal.

Game 1 will be Wednesday, 8 p.m. with the second game in Delta on Saturday. Game 3 will be back in New West Tuesday (8 p.m.) with Game 4, if necessary, in Delta on Saturday, July 19 and Game 5 at Queen’s Park the next night.

Josh Byrne fired three goals and assisted on two others Sunday. Connor Robinson had five assists. Robinson won the league scoring title with 104 points, 22 more than teammate Johnny Pearson. Byrne was fifth with 79 points in 12 games. He had a league-leading average of 6.58 points per game.

Adam Dickson also scored three goals Sunday. Luke Gillespie and Chris Nasato had two apiece with singles going to Anthony Malcom, Tyrell Hamer-Jackson, Nathan Stewart and Pearson.

The Salmonbellies clinched first place by downing the second-place Coquitlam Adanacs 7-5 Wednesday. The A’s ended their season at 17-3-1 with all three losses coming at the hands of New West.

Gillespie and Malcom scored twice. Pearson and Brett Dobray got the others.

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