Monday 24 February 2014

South 2 Match Report: Haringey Racers 3- Swindon Wildcats 6

The CVS Haringey Racers winning streak came to an end on Saturday night, as they lost 6-3 to the Swindon Wildcats at Alexandra Palace. 
The visitors jumped out to an early lead in the third minute via a Tom Rutkis goal, but Haringey hit back before the first break when Ricky Mills was teed up by Ben Osborne and Perry Whitlock on the power play. 
The Wildcats took the lead again straight after the break through Shannon Taylor but the Racers kept pace again when Sam Roberts was set up by Drew Campbell. Taylor added another two before the end of period, though,  sealing a hat-trick and putting Swindon in the driving seat heading into the final period.  
The Wildcats started strongly in the third, as they had in the other two periods, with Rutkis returning for his second before Logan Prince added another with ten minutes to go, putting the game out of the Racers' reach. Ricky Rutherford grabbed a consolation goal for the hosts in the final minute, assisted by Mason Webster and Anthony Child, but it was too little, too late, as Haringey waved their winning streak goodbye.
Coach Dan Sampson says: "We didn't really show up for the first two periods even though we were still in there on the scoreboard. We weren't strong enough defensively and gave their talented young kids too much time and space and we switched off at times and they punished us for it."
The Racers will host Cardiff at home on Saturday, before travelling to Oxford on Sunday and will be eager to avenge losses to both sides earlier in the season, with Sampson adding: "We're going to have to be disciplined, smart and play our best hockey. We're more than capable of getting four points out of this weekend and we just need to regroup and focus, finish as high in the league as we can and keep one eye on the cup."
Goaltender Ian Shepherd who has been struggling with a hip injury that ruled him out on Saturday is a doubt for the weekend, says Sampson: " It was a shame to lose Ian Shepherd after the warm up but he didn't feel fit to play. Our other goalie, young Sam Calder is more than capable and did a good job Saturday, we'll look at Shep in training though and make a decision on his fitness."
Photo: Racers' Ricky Rutherford by Sam Park