It was the kind of home opener that the Owen Sound Quantum Properties NorthStars wished they'd played on the road.
The Ontario Lacrosse Association Senior B League N'Stars gave up nine second-period goals and went on to fall 16-9 to the St. Catharines Saints on Saturday.
"It's tough and it certainly wasn't what we wanted," coach Brandon Sanderson said.
"I thought we played a great first and I think we got comfortable. They started running and we stopped running."
Owen Sound led 3-1 after the first period and had played a solid opening 20 minutes.
The first five minutes of the second were scoreless. And then the onslaught began.
St. Catharines scored five straight goals to take a 6-3 lead.
Owen Sound replied with two of its own to make it 6-5 but the Saints buried four more goals before the end of the middle frame to effectively put this game out of reach.
"We got really comfortable with what was happening in the first period, we were beating a really good team," N'Stars' captain Adam Jackson said.
"We kind of thought the game was in our hands and it wasn't. We have to keep our emotions in check. When you're on the top of the snowball, you can't be too high. And when you're on the bottom, you can't be too low. Just have to stay level and fight through it."
Pat Saunders had four goals while Brandon McMillen, Jeff Ivey, Jayme Szabolcs, Rob Milnes, and Ryan Linthorne added singles for Owen Sound (1-3-0, fifth).
"We had nine guys in the lineup who are in their first year of Senior B," Sanderson said.
"It's got to be our veterans. They've got to be the guys who pick that up. This was a learning bump."
Corey Fowler had a hat trick while Jay Thorimbert, Dylan Llord, Andy Tober, Brad Favero, and Chris Attwood all scored twice while Ross Smith, Chris Janese, and Jordie Daradick added singles for the Saints (5-0-0, first).
"Discipline was the key because we got off the floor quickly (in the second period) and we didn't get caught on the floor tired," said St. Catharines' coach Pat Campbell.
"It wasn't great lacrosse in the first and second but we just won the individual battles."
Owen Sound goalie Zach Bowen stopped 17 of 29 shots in two appearances in the game.
Back-up Ryan Oldrieve made four saves in two relief stints.
The Saints' Jake Henhawk stopped 35 shots.
The N'Stars are back in action on Saturday when they host the Norwood James Gang.
Game time at the Harry Lumley Bayshore Community Centre is 4 p.m.
SHOOTING STARS: The N'Stars are looking for people to sing the anthem at their home games. Anyone interested is to call president Randy Jackson at 519-376-0503.
Follow Bill Walker on Twitter at https://twitter.com/BillWalkerST