Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Laidler Preview: Coventry Blaze v Widnes Wild

This Saturday the Taylors Butchers NIHL Coventry Blaze welcome the Widnes Wild to the SkyDome for a 5pm start.

The Wild are hoping to continue last weeks form which saw them travel to Bradford and defeat the bottom placed club 13-3, ending a three game losing streak.

The Blaze are coming off a disappointing away trip to Nottingham, losing 10-3 and losing at home to Deeside 7-3 the week before.

The sixth placed Blaze have beaten the ninth placed Wild in their only encounter this season with the travelling Coventry squad picking up a 4-3 win but only two points separating the teams, anything can happen.

Tickets are £3 for kids and Coventry Blaze season ticket holders and £6 for adults.

Marcus Gambrill

Photo: Coventry Blaze's Sam Hammerton, Corey Goodison and Luke Smith by Scott Wiggins. www.scottwiggins.co.uk .

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Ice Hockey Review NIHL Yearbook Now Available from....

The 2014 edition of the Ice Hockey review NIHL yearbook features a full division-by- division and team-by-team review of the 2013/14 season in NIHL North & South. As well as team reports,  player stats and photos, there are details of all league, cup and play off competitions, interviews, features and lots more besides.

You can buy individual copies by m ail order at £7.50 each and there are also discount offers available for NIHL teams and supporters clubs who can raise £££s for their team. Full details of how to order can be found HERE

If you are in the North East, you can buy copies for Chris Mackenzie at Whitley Warriors home matches and also by prior arrangement at certain Billingham Stars home games.

On the South Coast and Isle of Wight, you can buy copies from Chris Randall.

Copies of the book are also available to buy - or will be shortly - at Blackburn Hawks, Solway Sharks, London Raiders and Streatham Redskins home games.

This list will be added to as more and more clubs order copies of the book to sell - so do watch this space!

Photo: Solway Sharks' Iain Bowie reading IHR 2014 (photo by David Morrison - www.david-morrison-photography.co.uk/solway-sharks)

Laidler Match Report: Bradford Bulldogs 3 - Widnes Wild 13

Widnes travelled to Bradford for their latest league fixture against the Bulldogs. Heavy motorway traffic caused a late arrival of the team coach at the rink. Wild were without Bobby Caunce, Geoff Wigglesworth and Tom Ratcliffe and Greg Ruxton was netminder for the vital Trans Pennine fixture. Young Sheffield Steeldogs Academy netminder, Josh Benstead took his place on the bench as back up.

The game opened in lively fashion with Myles Dacres the junior international, leading the Bradford forwards as they rained early shots in on Ruxton. Wild breakaways from Supa and Dunford almost brought the early goal. Both sides took minor penalties in the 10th minute. With Bradford down to three skaters, Filip Supa fed the puck to Sam Dunford who fired home an opening goal for Wild, with an angled shot at 10.38. Within two minutes Widnes doubled their lead, Ben Brown and Shaun Dipnall feeding Dan Bracegirdle. The defenceman fired a rising angled shot from the blue line, high into the Bulldogs net. Wild continued to dominate and spurned a couple of good chances

Within two minutes of the second period opening, Tom Jackson and Matt Wainwright set Filip Supa up for a third goal at 21.12. Three goals in under a minute from 26.58 saw Wild take complete control of the game. Chris Preston was the first scorer, slotting home a measured cross ice pass from Supa. Within seconds Sam Dunford struck again after Kieron Strangeway's pass put him clear. Ben Brown added a sixth from close in on the right after some fine work from Bez Hughes.Shaun Dipnall added a 7th goal for Wild crashing home a rebound off the netminder at 29.54. Maybe a touch of complacency crept in but Bradford got back into the game in the 37th minute. Outstanding forward Myles Dacres broke clear before forcing the puck past Greg Ruxton and taking the net off the mounts at 36.48. Within seconds he had added a second goal, finishing well from close in.

Wild coach Mark Gillingham, took the Widnes travelling support by surprise by giving young Sheffield netminder Josh Benstead his debut for the third period. After a couple of confident blocks
he was unlucky to concede the third Bradford goal, when Corey Stones took a pass out on the boards and fired a low shot from a seemingly impossible angle into the bottom right corner at 41.36. This spurred Wild back into intense action. They took firm control, replying at 43.02, Shaun Dipnall netting from a Sam Dunford pass. Within 30 seconds Filip Supa put the visitors further ahead with Dipnall the provider.

Dan Bracegirdle scored his second of the night with a low shot after good work by Ken Armstrong and Preston. This prompted a netminder change for Bradford, Matthew Fox replacing Jake Higham. Fox was soon in action but he couldn't keep out a Filip Supa solo effort at 46.39. Kieron Strangeway crashed home a twelfth in the 55th minute with Lee Pollitt wrapping up the scoring a minute later. Both goals were assisted by the irrepressible Sam Dunford who deservedly took the MVP for Widnes.

The game saw Wild playing with much more confidence against potentially tricky improving opponents. Thirteen Widnes goals were shared amongst eight different players with another four adding assists. The stop start fixture list has not helped team cohesion but the team return to home ice for a potentially exciting fixture against Hull Jets on Sunday - face off 18.15.

Coach , Mark Gillingham , was full of praise for his team's resurgent performance ' the team realised their true scoring potential and we hope to see the Widnes crowd backing us to the hilt in Sunday's match against Hull'.
 
Report by Dick Gillingham
 
Photo: Widnes Wild's MVP Sam Dunford. Photo by Geoff White - www.gw-images.co.uk
 

South 1 Weekend Review - 25th & 26th October

Streatham Redskins moved back to the top of the South 1 table after their 9-5 home win over bottom club Oxford City Stars saw them overtake defending Champions Chelmsford Chieftains, whose own win away at Oxford 24 hours earlier had seen them briefly reach the summit.

Wightlink Raiders are 3rd following their 6-2 win away at London Raiders and Invicta Dynamos picked up a 9-5 win at home to Solent Devils. Milton Keynes Thunder continued their superb start to the season with an 11-5 win over London Raiders on Sunday night. Thunder are in 4th place, level on points with Wightlink and have taken points off all teams above them so far this season.

In the South 1 Cup Group B, Streatham held group leaders Invicta to a 4-4 draw and picked up their 1st point in the group. Following an unbeaten weekend, the Redskins have now put together a 9 game unbeaten run.

Chelmsford lost 4-7 at home to Milton Keynes Lightning EPL team in the ECCS on Sunday. They scored first after just 2 minutes and remained on level terms at 2-2 until midway through the game. 4 goals in three minutes at the start of the third period put the game out of reach of the Chieftains, who were outshot 25-50 over the 60 minutes.
 
Photo: Invicta Dynamos' Andy Smith in action against Solent Devils. Photo by David Trevallion

Laidler Conference Weekend Summary - 25th & 26th October

In the Laidler Conference, the Solihull Barons remain 4 points clear at the top of the table despite not having to hit a puck at the weekend. Second place Sheffield Senators maintained their position with a 9-5 win over Hull Jets and closed up to 4 points behind the Barons, albeit having played more games.

The team of the weekend would have to be Telford Tigers who picked up 4 points to pull to within 2 points of the Senators but with 4 games in hand.  They had a close call away at bottom club Bradford Bulldogs who held them to a mere 6-9 victory – the highest number of goals the Bulldogs have actually  scored in a game to date – and then won 4-3 away at Deeside Dragons on Sunday.

The other Laidler games saw Nottingham Lions beat Coventry Blaze 10-3 for just their 3rd win in 9 games this season and Widnes Wild won 13-3 away at Bradford on Sunday to notch up their highest winning margin to date.
 
Photo: Telford Tigers netminder Denis Bell in action away at Deeside Dragons. Photo by Peter Sheffield - www.psd-images.co.uk

Moralee Conference Weekend Summary - 25 & 26th October

Blackburn Hawks extended their lead at the top of the Moralee Conference following a 4 point weekend that brought them 2 8-1 victories. On Saturday afternoon they beat Sheffield Spartans at iceSheffield and then saw off 2nd place Billingham Stars at home the following night.

The Hawks now lead the table by 5 clear points, although they have played two games more than the Stars. Whitley Warriors were without a game at the weekend remain in 3rd although they are level on points with Spartans and have now been joined by Sutton Sting – who won 8-1 away at Manchester Minotaurs in the only other Moralee game of the weekend.

In the English Challenge Cup North, Solway Sharks were shut out at home 11-0 by EPL team Manchester Phoenix in a game in which they were outshot 46 to 20. The Phoenix still top the qualifying group although they lost 2-3 at home to 2nd place Telford Tigers EPL on Sunday.
 
Photo: Blackburn Hawks 8 - Billingham Stars 1 - by John Milton www.eventog.uk

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Sharks New NZ International Checks Out The Ice Hockey Review 2014 Yearbook

Solway Sharks' new signing New Zealand international  Josh Hay reads up on the opposition in NIHL North with Sharks equipment manager Scott Houston in the 2014 edition of the Ice Hockey Review yearbook.

This features player stats, photos and reports for all teams and competitions from the 2013/14 season in NIHL North and South. Copies of the book will be available to buy at Solway Sharks home games - starting with the game against Sheffield Spartans on 8th November.  You can also order a copy by mail order straight from us but buying on a match night means that the extra money goes to the Sharks club instead of the Royal Mail! 

Photo by David Morrison - www.david-morrison-photography.co.uk/solway-sharks  

Sunday Results At A Glance - 26th October

Moralee: Blackburn Hawks 8 - Billingham Stars 1

Laidler: Sheffield Senators 9 - Hull Jets 5
Bradford Bulldogs 3 - Widnes Wild 13
Deeside Dragons 3 - Telford Tigers 4
Nottingham Lions 10  - Coventry Blaze  3

South 1:
Invicta Dynamos 9 - Solent Devils 5
Milton Keynes Thunder 11 - London Raiders 5
Streatham Redskins  8 - Oxford City Stars 5

ECCS: Chelmsford Cheiftains 4 - Milton Keynes Lightning EPL 7

South 2 East: Peterborough Islanders 13 - Haringey Racers 2

South 2 West: Bristol Pitbulls 3 - Wightlink Tigers 4

Photo: Peterborough Islanders' Nathan Pollard homes in on Ian Shepherd in the Haringey Racers net. Photo by Richard Davies.  www.smugmug.chudphotography.com

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Saturday Results At A Glance - 25th October 2014

All Saturday’s NIHL results at a glance and in one place

Moralee:
Sheffield Spartans 1 – Blackburn Hawks 8
Manchester Minotaurs 1 – Sutton Sting 8

ECCN: Solway Sharks 0 – Manchester Phoenix 11

Laidler:  Bradford Bulldogs 6 – Telford Tigers 9

South 1:
London Raiders 2 – Wightlink Raiders 6
Oxford City Stars – Chelmsford Chieftains

S1 Cup B: Streatham Redskins 4 v Invicta Dynamos 4

South 2 East:
Invicta Mustangs 2 – Lee Valley Lions 8
Chelmsford Warriors 1 – Slough Jets 3

Photo: Sheffield Spartans 1 - Blackburn Hawks 8 by John Milton www.eventog.uk

 

 

 

Monday, 20 October 2014

IHR 2014 Yearbook Available At Blackburn Hawks and Solway Sharks Home Matches

We are pleased to advise that copies of the new Ice Hockey Review NIHL yearbook looking back at the 2013/14 season in Moralee Conference, Laidler Conference and South Divisions 1 & 2 will shortly be available to purchase at Blackburn Hawks and Solway Sharks home matches.

To secure your copy, contact Annette Wallbank (Blackburn) HERE
 or David Morrison (Solway).HERE

If YOU would like to stock copies of the book at your home games, drop us a line EMAIL

Photo: Blackburn Hawks Captain Chris Arnone.  (Photo by John Milton www.eventog.uk)

Sunday Results At A Glance -19th October

Moralee: Whitley Warriors 9 - Manchester Minotaurs 1

ECCN: Manchester Phoenix EPL 12 - Blackburn Hawks 5

Laidler:
Sheffield Senators 6 - Hull Jets 3
Solihull Barons 9 - Nottingham Lions 3
Deeside Dragons 10 - Bradford Bulldogs 0

South 1:
Oxford City Stars 4 - Milton Keynes Thunder 5
Streatham Redskins 5 - Wightlink Raiders 5

SC1A: Solent Devils 2 - Chelmsford Chieftains 4

South 2 West:  Wightlink Tigers 5 - Swindon Wildcats 8
South 2 East: Chelmsford Warriors 3 - Haringey Racers 4

Photo: Streatham Redskins 5 - Wightlink Raiders 5 , by Rick Webb Photographic

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Saturday Results At A Glance - 18th October

Moralee: Sheffield Spartans 8 - Solway Sharks 5

Laidler: Sheffield Senators 1 - Solihull Barons 8
Coventry Blaze 3 - Deeside Dragons 7
Blackburn Eagles 9 - Bradford Bulldogs 2

South 1:
Chelmsford Chieftains 7 - Oxford City Stars 4
Bracknell Hornets 7 - Invicta Dynamos 4
Cardiff Devils 1 - Streatham Redskins 6

Photo: Blackburn Eagles v Bradford Bulldogs by John Milton - www.eventog.uk

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

2014 Edition Available Now!

The keenly awaited 2014 edition of Ice Hockey News Review is available now. This is the only book on the planet that covers all NIHL teams in north and south divisions 1&2 and is the IDEAL EARLY CHRISTMAS PRESENT FOR EVERY NIHL PLAYER OR FAN.

Selling Price - single copy inc UK p&p £7.50
Click here to order a single copy for £7.50:


Special discount deals are available for NIHL teams and supporters clubs - follow the link below:  http://www.icehockeyreview.co.uk/p/blog-page.html

Great commission opportunities for local sellers - drop us a line HERE

Laidler Match Report: Nottingham Lions 5 - Widnes Wild 4

For their second game of the weekend, Wild travelled to the National Ice Centre to take on the Nottingham Lions. Widnes were without Nicole Jackson, Bobby Caunce, Tom Ratcliffe and the injured Matt Wainwright. The team coach was late arriving at the rink.

The first period opened with a series of minor penalties with Widnes taking most of them. Nottingham were taking advantage of the extra numbers and they went 1 - 0 ahead at 11.32 with a tip in from the edge of the crease. As the period progressed, Wild came more into it as an attacking force with Brown, Pollitt, Dunford and Supa all causing problems. Rebounds off the Nottingham netminder were not put in the net.

Widnes came back into the game with an equaliser from close in by Lee Pollitt had broken away down the right at 24.51. Three almost identical goals took Nottingham well clear between the 29th and 32nd minutes. All three involved an unmarked man firing home from close range, when the puck came in from the corners. In the 34th minute an altercation behind the Widnes net saw Dan Bracegirdle and a Nottingham player battling on the boards. It followed a follow up slash on Greg Ruxton as he made a low save.

The final period saw a spirited comeback from the Wild . Shaun Dipnall found the net in the 43rd minute and as Widnes came back strongly Nottingham broke away to make it 5- 2. Chris Preston broke away on the right before firing home to make it 5 -3. In the final minute the outstanding Filip Supa made it 5-4 with a long range slap shot. This was a much improved performance from a Widnes side missing key players.

Report by Dick Gillingham

Photo by Geoff White - www.gw-white.co.uk

South 1 Match Report: Solent Devils 9 - London Raiders 4

Devils come from behind to secure first home win of the season

Despite falling behind in the first period a stunning third period performance saw the Devils record their second victory in two weeks, with a 9-4 win over London Raiders

Having beaten the Devils 1-4 just three weeks ago the London Raiders returned to the Gosport Arena full of confidence. Devils took an early lead, through Andrew Magee who latched onto a pass from Mitch Murray in the second minute. However, despite outshooting their visitors, three goals were conceded in the final five minutes of the period, leaving the score 1-3 at the first break.

As soon as the puck dropped for the start of the second period it was apparent to the vocal home support that the Devils were determined to avenge the previous defeat. However, it looked as though the Raiders’ netminder would yet again frustrate the home side. Andrew Magee finally found the back of the net again in the 27th minute, with Mitch Murray adding one of his own just three minutes later. The confidence of the home side was growing, with the defence restricting the Raiders to just 12 shots on net this period. Devils continued to pepper the visitor’s net, but could not find a way past again this period.

With the match tied at 3-3 at the start of the final period it felt as though the first goal of the period was going to be critical. Devils took the lead in the 45th minute, through a neat passing move with Alex Murray slotting the puck into the back of the net. Like the animals going onto Noah’s ark the goals then seemed to come two-by-two, with Magee scoring two goals within 13 seconds of each other in the 48th minute to extend the lead to 6-3. Raiders’ 4th goal in the 54th minute was soon cancelled by another pair from the Devils, from George Norcliffe (55th minute) and Mitch Murray (56th minute). Man of the Match Josh Abbott came close, but it was to be Ryan McFarlane who was to round up the scoring with just 16 seconds left on the clock.

It is clear the Devils are now starting to bond as a team, and the play between the Murray brother and Andrew Magee clearly left London Raiders with no response. Devils will look to continue their winning form, with an away match to local rivals Wightlink Raiders on Saturday before welcoming the Chelmsford Chieftains to Gosport for the first time this season on Sunday. 
 
Report by Simon Beal
 
Photo: Devils' Andrew Magee who scored 4+2 against London Raiders - by Dave Chapman - www.dcphoto.co.uk 

Laidler Match Report: Widnes Wild 1 - Sheffield Senators 8

Sheffield Senators were the Saturday night visitors to the Silverblades Rink. The visitors have made a strong start to the league season and a tough game was in prospect. Wild were without Bobby Caunce, Geoff Wigglesworth and GB. ladies netminder, Nicole Jackson. A smaller than usual crowd welcomed the teams.

The game opened at a furious pace with both netminders in early action. Chris Preston broke clear for Wild in the 6th minute and his shot to the top right corner was well saved by Hartley.

Despite some strong attacking, the final shot was letting Widnes down. After sustained pressure Sheffield took a lead at 15.37 - Nathan Britton scoring from close range. The visitors increased their lead on the powerplay at 18.10, Tom Humphries firing home a low shot from the blue line into the bottom left corner.

After Widnes had opened the 2nd period with purpose, Nathan Britton broke clear and fired an unstoppable shot past Greg Ruxton at 23.45. A disastrous three minutes followed with Sheffield scoring three more goals without reply. Widnes called a time out and finally some organisation came into the defensive play. After an altercation behind the Sheffield goal, Widnes finally took advantage of the powerplay for Filip Supa to find the net at 36.19. After some sustained Widnes pressure, Sheffield broke clear on the powerplay and despite Ruxton saving to his left, the puck crept inside the left hand post at 39.51.

In a final penalty-strewn period, Widnes piled constant pressure on the Sheffield net. Despite having a 5 on 3 advantage on several occasions, they couldn’t find a way past netminder Hartley who kept out 23 shots. The monotony was broken when Chris Preston and Joel Aheran dropped the gloves and battled in front of the Sheffield net. In a rare attack on the Widnes net, a speculative shot from Arron Bell beat Greg Ruxton to take the final score to 1 - 8. This was a really disappointing display from the Wild, greatly missing the creative talents of the missing Bobby Caunce.
 
Report by Dick Gillingham
 
Photo by Geoff White - www.gw-images.co.uk

Laidler Conference Weekend Round Up 11th & 12th October

In the Laidler Conference, Solihull Barons sit top of the table with the only remaining 100% record in NIHL north. They beat Hull Jets 18-2 on Sunday night in a game for double points which sees them on 16 points from 7 games.

Sheffield Senators are having a very good early season run and picked up two wins at the weekend – winning 1-8 away at Widnes on Saturday and then 5-4 at home to Deeside on Sunday – to put them in second place in the table, albeit having played more games than any other team at this stage. 

The Lions themselves picked upon only their second win of the season with a narrow 5-4 victory over last season’s “bogey side” Widnes on Sunday, having been shut out 3-0 away at Telford on Saturday.

Blackburn Eagles picked up a 4-4 draw at home to Coventry Blaze in a game for double points, having led 4-3 with just 10 minutes left to play. They currently sit comfortably mid-table to go and although there is still a long way to go this season, look as if they may finally be able to shake off the mantle of perennial cellar dwellers. 
In the other game of the weekend, bottom club Bradford Bulldogs took a Saturday night hammering losing 3-19 at home to Deeside Dragons.  The Bulldogs remain firmly rooted to the bottom of the table with no points to show from their 5 games to date.

Photo: Match action from Solihull v Hull - photo by Keith Davies

Moralee Coneference Weekend Round Up - 11 & 12th October

There were only 2 league games in the Moralee Conference at the weekend.  Sutton Sting picked up their first win of the season at the 3rd attempt with a win on Saturday and Sheffield Spartans did the same thing on Sunday with a 3-4 win away at Whitley Warriors.

Defending champions Solway Sharks – currently sitting second bottom in the table, although they have played fewer league games than everyone else - were in cup action over the weekend.

On Saturday night, they beat Whitley Warriors 4-1 in the first leg of the two-legged St Andrews Cup invitation competition and on Sunday night they lost 7-1 away to Sheffield Steeldogs EPL side in the ECCN.

Billingham Stars lost 1-6 at home to Manchester Phoenix in the ECCN and sit firmly rooted to the bottom of the group table with just 2 points from their 6 cup games.   

Photo: Solway Sharks v Whitley Warriors in the St Andrews Cup - photo by David Morrison www.david-morriosn-photography.co.uk/solway-sharks

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Sunday Results At A Glance

All Sunday's NIHL results in one place and easy to read..

Moralee: Whitley Warriors 3 - Sheffield Spartans 4

ECCN: Billingham Stars 1 - Manchester Phoenix EPL 6
Sheffield Steeldogs EPL7 - Solway Sharks 1

Laidler:
Sheffield Senators 5 - Deeside Dragons 4
Solihull Barons 18 - Hull Jets 2 (Double Points)
Nottingham Lions 5 - Widnes Wild 4

South 1:
Invicta Dynamos 7 - Bracknell Hornets 5
Solent Devils 9 - London Raiders 4
Cardiff Devils  0 - Wightlink Raiders 6

ECCS: Chelmsford Chieftains 3 - Guildford Flames EPL 4

South 2 West: Basingstoke Buffalo - Swindon Wildcats

Saturday, 11 October 2014

Saturday Results At A Glance

All Saturday's NIHL results in one place and easy to read.

Moralee:  Sutton Sting 7 - Manchester Minotaurs 5

ECCN: Manchester Phoenix EPL 6 - Billingham Stars 2

Laidler:
Bradford Bulldogs 3 - Deeside Dragons 19
Telford Tigers 3 - Nottingham Lions 0
Blackburn Eagles 4 - Coventry Blaze 4 (double points)
Widnes Wild 1 - Sheffield Senators 8

South 1:
Streatham Redskins 4 - Cardiff Devils 2
Wightklink Raiders 6 - Oxford City Stars 1
Bracknell Hornets 2 - Milton Keynes Thunder 4

South 2 East:
Peterborough Islanders 3- Slough Jets 6
Chelmsford Warriors 11 - Lee Valley Lions 0

Photo Top: Streatham go top of NIHL South 1 / Photo by Rick Webb Photography

Photo bottom: Peterborough Islanders' Leon Groom and Slough Jets Stas Prokoviev. Photo by Richard Davies - www.chudphotography.smugmug.com

Thursday, 9 October 2014

NIHL South 2 Weekend Review - Courtesy Of Bristol Pitbulls

On Saturday, the Peterborough Islanders were stunned to find themselves 2-0 down to the Chelmsford Warriors Ice Hockey Team with less than five minutes played in their first home game of the season as sixteen year old Oliver Baldock continued his stunning form this season.

Islanders did fight back, though. Quite literally in a match that saw them assessed 100 minutes in penalt...ies. Four Peterborough players were given 10-minute misconducts, including a second misconduct penalty to Callum Worthington-Evans.

In amongst the penalties, Islanders were the ones lighting up the red light with five straight goals before Warriors could reply. Nathan Pollard continued his claim as best NIHL2S player over the first month of the season with 2+1. But, there may be concern in The Fens at the lack of goals coming from the other lines.

Still, Islanders do sit top of Group A in the cup with a 100% record. Warriors are still to waiting for their first cup win and face a challenge if they are to repeat their semi-final appearance of last season.

On Sunday, Cardiff Enl Devils traveled to the real island to take on a Wightlink Tigers side who had conceded double figures in their first two games. It was much tighter this time, but Tigers still came out on the wrong side of a 5-4 scoreline.

Three goals from the first eight shots by the Welsh side saw Elliott Powell pulled from the home net and left Tigers chasing the game all night long. To be fair, they very nearly did it with a late rally from 5-2 down.

Interestingly, Cardiff, a team with a reputation of being unbeatable at home but very poor travellers have completely changed that so far this season. They've lost their only home game but have a 100% record on the road. As a result, Cardiff how sit top of the Western Conference.

Finally, Swindon Wildcats succeeded where Wightlink failed, by coming from behind to tie their home cup game 5-5 against the Bristol Pitbulls.

Bristol took an early lead through Jordan Smith but then fell victim to their own indiscipline. Of Swindon's five goals, four were scored on the powerplay.

Bristol did recover from a 2-1 first period deficit to lead the game 5-3 midway through the third. But, a late delay of the game penalty on Sam Shone for firing the puck out of the defensive zone, incredibly the fourth such penalty on Bristol in the game, gave the hosts a late powerplay opportunity which was converted by Glenn Billing.

Bristol now sit second in both their cup group and their league conference. But, a warning shot has been fired across the bow of the players by Richie Hargreaves. He's not after second places...


Report by Graham Goodman - Bristol Pitbulls Media Officer

Photo: Bristol Pitbulls' James Warman - courtesy of Flyfifer Photography - www.flyfifer.co.uk

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

South 1 Match Report: Oxford City Stars 5 - Solent Devils 11

Devils secure first win in style
 
SOLENT Devils secured their first win of the season with an emphatic victory over Oxford City Stars in this high scoring match.
 
After the disappointment of recent weeks the hard-work being put in at training finally paid off on Sunday as the Devils secured their first win of the season. This was an big win in which every player played their part. The Devils raced into a commanding four goal lead in the first period, and from that point on always looked like the winning side.
 
As has been the case in recent matches the Devils started this match at a fast pace, and forced the first penalty in the first minute, this was duly converted into a powerplay goal by Alex Murray. Devils kept up the pressure and were rewarded with a second powerplay in the seventh minute as Drew Campbell fired home from close range. Two goals from Mitch Murray within two minutes wrapped up the first period scoring for the Devils.
 
After dominating and outshooting their hosts 13-6 in the first period the Devils knew they were likely to face a determined Oxford team in the second period. However, it was to be the Devils who scored first as Josh Abbott extended their lead to five. Oxford finally got on the scoreboard with a powerplay goal of their own in the 26th minute, but this was cancelled out by Andrew Magee’s neat finish in the 30th minute.  Oxford added two quick goals in the 37th minute, including a penalty shot goal, but a late goal from Andy Goddard saw the Devils take a commanding 3-7 lead into the final period.
 
The Devils were determined not to let this victory slip out of their hands and despite matched oxford goal for goal, even adding two extra as the match drew to an end. Oxford opened the scoring this period, but with two minutes the Devils had restored their four goal advantage through Magee’s second of the night. When Oxford scored in the 47th minute, Devils yet again pulled back their advantage as Mitch Murray completed his hat-trick. Oxford appeared to tire in the last ten minutes allowing the Devils to extend their lead with goals from Jamie Fitzpatrick and yet another from Mitch Murray.
 
Report by Simon Beal
 
Photo of Mitch Murray by Dave Chapman -

Laidler Match Report: Coventry Blaze 4- Hull Jets 1

It was all White on the night as the Taylors Butchers NIHL Coventry Blaze dominated the Hull Jets 4-1 with Dale White scoring all the goals.

The Blaze played a very physical game, playing on the Jets short bench with James Pease and Joseph Steeples leading the assault. Hull struggled to get anything going forward but netminder Jack Dalby stepped up his game to keep his side in with a chance.

Eventually the pressure paid off as Philip Pollok fires a shot and the rebound falls to White. White chips the puck over the body of Dalby and watches it drop down inside the goal after 15 minutes. The Blaze continued their attack but they couldn’t finish off and the period came to an end.

Just over a minute and Hull tie the game with Matt Jeffcock firing past Coventry netminder Connor Ranby who had originally been fairly untroubled. Dale Buckland left the game after a brief tussle with Jeffcock which gave him a match penalty for roughing. The offence for both teams seemed to struggle to mount any real attack until just four minutes remained in the period and White picked up his second, shooting from just inside the blue line after a pass from Pease. Hull had been gaining some momentum before the goal but this disappeared completely when White got his hat-trick with four seconds remaining in the period.

The final period started the same as the others, Coventry were physical but struggled offensively. Pease had the best chance as an attempted clearance hits him deep inside Jets defensive territory but Dalby again steps up to save. White nearly gets an assist as he passes across the goalmouth to Stephen Heape but a Jets stick knocks it just out of reach. Hull increase the pressure on Ranby to try and get one back but the defence manage to keep it out and feed it to White. He brings it just outside the Hull third and lets rip a rocket into the top left corner. Hull can’t get anything on the Blaze net and the Blaze are more than happy to sit back and see out the win.

Report by Marcus Gambrill

Photo of Dale White by Scott Wiggins - www.scottwiggins.co.uk

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Laidler Conference Weekend Round Up - 4th & 5th October

Solihull Barons remain top of the Conference table and now have the only 100% record after their 8-4 win over Telford Tigers who, themselves, are now second following a 2-8 double point win over Blackburn Eagles on Saturday night. 

Sheffield Senators remain 3rd after a 12-4 win away at bottom place Bradford Bulldogs.

Hull Jets had an up and down weekend beating Nottingham Lions 5-4 on Saturday night and then losing 4-1 away at Coventry Blaze on Sunday, although they remain in 4th place in the table.

The Lions find themselves in the rather unusual position of 2nd from bottom with just 3 points from their first 5 games but as Widnes and Deeside did not play at the weekend, the overall picture remains far from clear at this early stage of the season.

Photo: Solihull Barons v Telford Tigers by Keith Davies 

Moralee Conference Weekend Round Up - 4th & 5th October 2014

Blackburn Hawks enjoyed a 4 point weekend, albeit in 2 different competitions, as they beat Solway Sharks 6-4 away in the league on Saturday and then Billingham Stars 10-2 in the Cup on Sunday.  Those results mean that Hawks now top the Moralee Conference table with 7 points from 4 games. 

Billingham drop down to second but still boast the only 100% record in the Moralee Conference with 3 wins from 3 games. 

Solway Sharks finally got their first league points of the season after an 11-6 win away at Manchester Minotaurs. This moves them into 4th place in the table with 2 points from 2 games - one point behind Whitley Warriors who drew 2-2 away at Sheffield Spartans on Saturday.

Photo: Minotaurs v Sharks by David Morrison - www.david-morrison-phoyography.co.uk/solway-sharks


Sunday, 5 October 2014

Sunday Results At A Glance - 5th October

Moralee:  Manchester Minotaurs 6 - Solway Sharks 11
ECCN:  Blackburn Hawks 10 - Billingham Stars 2

Lailder: 
Solihull Barons 8 - Telford Tigers 4
Bradford Bulldogs 4 - Sheffield Senators 12
Coventry Blaze 4 - Jull Jets 1

South 1:
Bracknell Hornets 8 - Wightlink Raiders 2
Oxford City Stars 5 - Solent Devils 11
Chelmsford Chieftains 7 - London Raiders 3
Streatham Redskins 5 - Milton Keynes Thunder 1

ECCS: Invicta Dynamos 2 - Basingstoke Bison EPL 7

South 2 West: Wightlink Tigers 4 - Cardiff Devils 5

South 2 Cup: Swindon Wildcats  5- Bristol Pitbulls 5

Photos: Blackburn Hawks v Billingham Stars by John Milton - www.eventog.uk  

Swondin Wildcats v Bristol Pibulls by Carol Light - www.richjoda.me.uk

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Saturday Results At A Glance - 4th October 2014

Moralee:
Sheffield Spartans 2 - Whitley Warriors 2
Solway Sharks 4 - Blackburn Hawks 6

Laidler:
Hull Jets 5 - Nottingham Lions 4
Blackburn Eagles 2 - Telford Tigers 8 (Double Points)

South 1:
Chelmsford Chieftains 1- Milton Keynes Thunder 1
Cardiff Devils  2 - Bracknell Hornets 4

ECCS: Swindon Wildcats EPL 3 - Wightlink Raiders 0

South 1 Cup: London Raiders 4 - Invicta Dynamos 9

South 2 Cup: Peterborough Islanders 5- Chelmsford Warriors 3

Photos:
Top - Solway Sharks 4 - Blackburn Hawks 6  - by John Milton www.eventog.uk

Bottom - Peterborough Islanders v Chelmsford Warriors by Richard Davies  www.chudphotography.smugmug.com

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Fylde Coast Ice Arena in Blackpool - A Few First Impressions

New Rink Report by Ice Hockey Review editor Paul Breeze

Having been invited down to the new Fylde Coast Ice Arena to do the match announcements for the Blackpool Seagulls Under 16 match on Sunday, I was able to have a look around this brand new facility.  Here are a few notes on what I saw / found out. 

Please note that this report is based on my own observations  and conversations with various people – and not from any official sources.

The rink is not yet “fully” open.  They opened on a low key basis during August as soon as the ice pad / skate hire and cafĂ© were ready with a few public skating sessions just to get things moving. However, they had to wait until a planning appeal was resolved at the start of the September before they could be sure that the council would allow the rink to operate. Understandably, before that issue was resolved, they didn’t want to put too much time / money into extra facilities.  Happily, the outcome was positive and the FCIA is now busy working towards having all the extra infrastructure in place.

The ice pad certainly looks full size – it is also marked out for curling – although nobody has confirmed to me the actual dimensions. I do know the dimensions of the video screen, however, (“best in the UK” apparently…) it is 6.5 x 3.5m and makes for a very good ice hockey scoreboard (see photo right).

The hockey benches, penalty boxes and time- keepers bench are all in place and there is glass installed all round. There is no spectator seating as of yet although the initial seating will be on the balcony (in photo below). There are eventual plans for more seating areas but I think they will just start off with this and see how things go. I think everybody who has been there appreciates that it is a work in progress but are very supportive of what the owners are working towards.

There is a second ice pad and it is square!  It is called the “studio rink” and is designed to be a performance space for ice shows and pantomimes. There will eventually be a stage at one end. This ice pad has no barriers around it. This means that wheelchair users can go on the ice and it is also less intimidating for youngsters learning to skate than having to step through the boards on to the main ice pad.

The spectator balcony is situated between the main rink and the studio rink and gives a view over both.  There are also plans to have a bar and a “warm room” up there so it will be interesting to see how it all develops.

You can find out more about the new Fylde Coast Ice Arena and see details of public skating sessions and other activities on their FACEBOOK PAGE

Photos from top:  View of the Fylde Coast Ice Arena, Video Screen / Scoreboard,  Spectator balcony (still under construction)  Photos by Paul Breeze 

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Laidler Match Report: Coventry Blaze 6 - Telford Tigers 7

The Taylors Butchers NIHL Coventry Blaze fell to another one goal loss as the visiting Telford Tigers left with all the points after a 7-6 win.

Telford got off to a flying start, going three up after two minutes with the Blaze barely finding time to get their stride. Dale White pulls one back midway through the first but a Luke Smith penalty gives the Tigers a man advantage and Telford jump on it to finish off the period 4-1.

Coventry quickly pulled two back after the break, coach James Pease richochets his shot off a Telford stick before Philip Pollok chases down a long pass from Sam Hammerton to cut Telfords lead to one. The home fans cheers are still ringing around the Skydome when Telford put another past Chris Gill. White gets another, forcing a goalmouth scramble across the line. Again the Tigers quickly regain the advantage which puts the score at 6-4 and Gill is replaced by Elite League backup Connor Ranby. Dale Buckland finds Hammerton open across ice to put the Blaze down by one and once again Telford pile on the pressure and get another goal to extend the lead before the final period.

Coventry up the pressure and it final pays off as man of the match Corey Goodison puts the puck top corner to once again pull the Blaze within one. Coventry can almost feel the point and throw everything at the Telford net but the Tigers defence hold strong to see out the draw.

The NIHL Coventry Blaze will face the Hull Jets this Sunday at the Skydome.

Report by Marcus Gambrill

Photo: Coventry Blaze's Philip Pollock. (Photo by Scott Wiggins - www.scottwiggins.co.uk)