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Kings host division leaders

June 18, 2014

Kingston Kings will be trying to put to rest two demons Thursday night when they host the Peterborough Lakers in an Ontario Junior C Lacrosse League game at Centre 70.

The Kings, 1-8-1, have lost their last seven games in a row, and they’re winless at Centre 70 in their last 11 games.

Shedding either of those two back-riding monkeys won’t be easy for the Kings, who have fallen into last place in the Far East division, one point behind the Gloucester Griffins. The Lakers, 10-2, lead the division by six points over the second-place Cornwall Celtics.

The Lakers won their first five games of the season before losing back-to-back road games, at Cornwall and Clarington, in late May. Since then, Peterborough has won five in a row, including a 23-6 victory over the Kings last Friday in Peterborough.

The highest-scoring team in the league — 150 goals, six more than the next closest team, Six Nations, which has played two more games — the Lakers are led by Cole McWilliams, the league’s leading scorer with 25 goals and 69 points in 11 games. Beyond McWilliams, Peterborough presents a balanced lineup, with six other players in double digits in goals, more than any other team in the East.

The Kings are destined to play either Peterborough or Cornwall in the first round of playoffs and they’ll be using the last six games of the regular year to get their young players ready for post-season play. In their last game, a 12-8 loss to Innisfil Sunday afternoon, the Kings put a lineup on the floor that had six first-year juniors and six others in their second year with the Kings, most of whom had played sparingly as rookies.

The Kings are expecting to welcome their top scorer, Zach Masterson, back to the lineup Thursday. He suffered a shoulder injury in last Thursday’s loss to Gloucester and missed the two games since then. Kingston will be without Austin Maracle and J.P. DiFilippo, both of whom were hurt in Sunday’s game against Innisfil. Maracle, with a broken thumb, and DiFilippo, with a separated shoulder, are expected to miss the remainder of the season.

Game time Thursday is 8 p.m.

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