Sunday 3 April 2016

Billingham Stars Win NIHL North Cup

Billingham Stars secured the NIHL North Cup after 2 victories at the weekend which lifted  them above Blackburn Hawks in the final group table.

With both Stars and Hawks winning home and away against Solway Sharks in the competition earlier in the season – and the 4th team, Widnes Wild, really only taking part to gain experience rather than having any real hope of winning silverware  -  it all came down to the two cup encounters between the top two in the group.

Hawks won 1-2 away in Billingham after a 1-1 draw was decided in overtime – the first time that an overtime win was used in NIHL competitions.  That gave Blackburn 2 points from the game and Billingham one point for an “overtime loss”. Then in Blackburn’s last home game of their Moralee Conference winning season, Billingham shocked the new champions with a 2-6 victory to put them well and truly in the driving seat.  Two points from a win at Widnes the following evening would suffice to put them clear at the top of the group and the ensuing 1-7 win meant that Billingham were able to celebrate their first trophy since winning the ENL North title in 2012.
Story to follow....