Tuesday 18 November 2014

Laidler Match Reports: Sheffield Senators v Widnes Wild & Sheffield Senators v Telford Tigers

It was a case of mixed fortunes this weekend for Sheffield Senators as they beat Widnes Wild on Saturday and lost to Telford Tigers on Sunday in their home double header at Ice Sheffield.

They were up against it early in the first period against Widnes Wild who deserved their 1-0 lead courtesy of Bobby Caunce’s goal timed at 2.03. As the period progressed Senators got more into the game but struggled to overcome a strong Widnes team, who were playing some good hockey, to trail by the odd goal going into the period break.

Wild got the second period off to a great start when Filip Supa scored on 20.44, finishing off some nice play with assists to Lee Pollitt & Shaun Dipnall. However Widnes were unable to build on their advantage as Senators went on to be the more dominant team and although Widnes did create chances they were outworked by a determined Senators team that deservedly went into the third on level terms at 2-2. It could have been a lead had it not been for some good defensive play including some solid netminding from Wild’s Ruxton but it was a happier Senators team leaving the ice after 40 minutes. Sergevs Jegorovs set up Mikey Mawer to tuck one in from close range on 30.32 with Joel Aheran taking his chance well to equalise timed 33.15, assisted Callum Rawson & Cam King.

The third period was a little closer with both teams enjoying good spells of pressure but Senators always looked the more likely to score which proved to be the case when a superb goal from Josh Gent timed 48.28 put Sens in front with an assist for Cam King. Senators continued to push forward and were rewarded with another good goal from Josh Gent who was having a great game, goal timed 53.05; assisted Tom Humphries & Sergevs Jegorovs to make it 4-2 to Sens. Widnes’s response was swift when on 53.55 Lee Pollitt scored a nice goal, assisted Filip Supa & Shaun Dipnall. This set up a tense finish with both teams exchanging chances but not quite able to make them count as the clock ticked down too see Senators claim what was a hard fought but deserved victory over a hardworking and very good Widnes Wild. Senators Man of the Match went to Josh Gent in what was another terrific game of hockey between these two teams…Final Score: Senators 4 Widnes Wild 3

Confidence was high on Sunday as second placed Senators squared up to third placed Telford Tigers with Sens looking to revenge their previous disappointing loss earlier in the season.

It was an interesting first period with neither team allowing the other to gain the upper hand but both had their moments to score but solid netminding from both goalies ensured the game was goalless. That was until Tigers’ Russell Plant was called for hooking to leave Senators on the powerplay, however, Telford gained possession from the face off to set up & score a lovely short-handed goal through Ben Washburn, assisted James Smith on 17.01. The score at this point was a little harsh on Senators as there had been very little between the two teams in the first period.

A poor showing from Senators basically gifted the game to Telford who were more than happy to make most of the opportunities laid at their door through sloppy defending, needless penalties and too many basic errors in what was a very uncharacteristic Senators showing for which they only have themselves to blame. Joe Ashton scored on 21.59 which was followed by two Karol Jets goals to make it 4-0 to Telford. The first of Jets two goals was a powerplay goal timed 22.23 followed by his second on 29.58, a short-handed goal with James Smith getting assists on both goals. Senators tried to get themselves back into the game but it just wasn’t happening and Telford, who were now basically just doing the basics right controlled the game. Senators’ frustration boiled over somewhat when Paul Lofthouse was thrown out of the game for cross-checking to the head which gave Tigers a 5 minute powerplay in which they added another to make it 5-0. Joe Ashton was the scorer on 38.01 with assists on the goal from Matthew Price & Ben Washburn.

The reaction from Senators in the third was noteworthy as they salvaged a lot of pride with a much more competent and gutsy performance which resulted them being the better team in the period but they couldn’t break down Tigers defence with some excellent saves from Denis Bell in Telford’s goal who was made to work hard for his shutout. Telford still threatened but weren’t getting things their own way as much but did manage to score again, a very good goal too through Matthew Price who made no mistake to make it 6-0 on 55.19. Senators continued to battle away but it was to no avail as they went down to what were a better team on the day for which there can be no argument. It’s hard to believe that the shot count was 28-25 in Telford’s favour but you have to show for the full 60 minutes if you are to take anything from a game against any team, let alone one as good as Telford…Final Score: Senators 0 Telford Tigers 6.

Senators Man of the Match Award went to Martyn Gray who like his teammates will be looking to put things right next week when Senators travel to Telford on Saturday which is followed by a home game on Sunday vs Nottingham Lions; face off 4.30pm

Report by Phil Holden

Photo top:  Goal action from Senators v Widnes Wild. Photo by Geoff White - www.gw-images.co.uk
Photo bottom: Telford Tigers netminder Denis Bell. Photo by Peter Sheffield www.psd-images.co.uk