It didn't take long for the Gajic brothers to make their mark in the New Westminster Salmonbellies 17-7 win over Nanaimo in their home opener on May 24.
First star Ilija Gajic opened the Western Lacrosse League season for the Salmonbellies in the third minute with a goal from the left side on an assist from his younger brother Alex.
Older brother and team captain Nenad then took a major penalty for a back check and eldest brother Milan came through with his first-ever senior A point, leading a two-on-one up the floor before passing off to Martin Cummings who scored shorthanded to give the 'Bellies an early 2-0 lead.
Ilija scored once more in the first period and tallied two more in the final frame to lead the Salmonbellies with four goals and two assists.
Alex collected a pair of assists, while Nenad and Milan finished the night off with single helpers.
Second star Kevin Crowley led all scorers with a seven-point night, including back-to-back goals early in the middle period that put the home team ahead 8-1 after just 23 minutes of play.
"It was nice," said Ilija to play with all three of his brothers for the first time. "Except in some moments of the game, the team played well. - It was a good first game from everyone."
Nenad was also happy with the way the Gajic family debuted.
"I'm the only one who has played with all of them (my brothers) but not at the same time. It was fun," Nenad said.
Piling up the points against Nanaimo, a team that overwhelmed Langley by the same 17-7 score a week earlier, appeared fun, too.
New West surrendered two power-play goals to Nanaimo early in the second period, but the 'Bellies got back on the gas pedal and fired five more goals in the final 10 minutes to put the outcome in little doubt.
However, the final period was nothing like the first two, degenerating into a sloppy affair as the two teams swapped eight goals with what appeared to be little emphasis on defence.
"I wasn't surprised we looked that sharp. - They've all been working so hard. - We just got to play a full 60 minutes," added Ilija. "I know personally I didn't play every shift, and to win you have to play all 60."
New Westminster appeared to do better in that department on Saturday following a 9-7 win over the struggling Coquitlam Adanacs.
Nenad added the nationally No. 2ranked Salmonbellies have no intentions of ending the season like they did last year.
"It was not acceptable the way we finished last year. We were really itching to play tonight (Thursday), for sure," said Nenad.
The Salmonbellies host Maple Ridge at Queen's Park Arena on Thursday. New West is in Burnaby today (Friday) against the Lakers at the Bill Copeland Sports Centre. Both games are 7: 45 p.m. starts.