A last-minute appeal to the B.C. Lacrosse Association on Sunday failed to give the New Westminster Salmonbellies the second place they arguably deserved.
The Salmonbellies finished in third place in the B.C. Junior Lacrosse League following a 9-4 win over the Burnaby Lakers at the Bill Copeland Sports Centre later the same day.
New West finished with 14 wins and 29 total points, one point back of runner-up Delta, which profited by the forfeiture of the 'Bellies' June 28 win over Nanaimo.
New West was docked two points for playing recently signed junior B holdout Quinn Smith after acquiring the Kamloops runner in a trade.
The junior 'Bellies will open their best-of-three playoff on Saturday at Queen's Park Arena against Victoria, which also lost points in the standings for a similar violation.
With the loss of the appeal, Smith will remain ineligible to play for the remainder of the post season.
New West and Victoria lost an initial appeal to the B.C. junior league last week.
"The kid (Smith) suffers and we lose second place. But we have to move forward and play Victoria," said New West general manager Doug Zack.
Like-minded GMs will form a committee later this summer and go through the BCJLL's operating policy in the hopes of clarifying any vaguely worded rules, Zack said.
"At the end of the day, we got beat up by an interpretation of a rule," Zack said. "We will try our best to get this (committee) going and to put a big dent in it, so mistakes will not be repeated with a better policy behind the ruling."
Any policy changes would then have to be endorsed at the BCLA annual general meeting in November.
In Burnaby, Anthony Malcom got the New West juniors rolling off the opening faceoff 32 seconds into the game with his ninth goal of the year.
New West then silenced any idea Burnaby may have had of a comeback when Luke Gillespie started the final frame with his first of two goals at 56 seconds.
Josh Becker also collected a pair of goals in the win. Malcom led all scorers with five points.
Junior B callup Spencer England got the win in goal, stopping 35 shots.
The junior A kicks off tonight (Wednesday) in Langley with Thunder hosting the Port Coquitlam Saints at the Langley Events Centre at 8 p.m.
New West opens its best-of-three playoff with Victoria at Queen's Park on Saturday.
The series reverts to Victoria on Sunday, with an if necessary game scheduled for Queen's Park on Tuesday. All game times are 5 p.m.