Sunday 28 January 2024

Match Report: Connah’s Quay Cobras 9 – Solihull Vikings 7 (Challenge Match)

Slavomir Sykora (#77) was the Cobras' MVP in the 9-7 win over Solihull (Photo by Paul Breeze)

The Connah’s Quay Cobras notched up their 7th win in a row with a hard fought and highly entertaining 9-7 win over the Solihull Vikings at Deeside Leisure Centre on Saturday.

The Cobras opened the scoring with a goal from Sam Plant in the 6th minute and further strikes from team captain Evan McKinney, player coach Emma Dutton, Ken Valyear and Plant, again, saw them leading 5-0 with just 12 minutes on the clock.

Solihull scored their first goal of the game on 16 minutes and the score remained 5-1 at the first period break.

The second period was a more cagey affair and it took until 29 minutes for the next breakthrough, which fell to Stewart Cutting who edged the Cobras further ahead with a powerplay goal punishing a Solihull slashing call.  

Solihull pulled a goal back on 36 minutes but the 5-goal advantage was restored just 16 seconds later with a goal from Slavomir Sykora.  The Vikings hit back again with another goal 59 seconds after that to level the period at 2-2 and at 7-3 at the second interval, the game no longer seemed quite as one-sided as it had at the first.

Solihull noticeably upped their game in the third period and three unanswered strikes pulled them right back into contention with just one goal between the two teams.  

The Cobras called a timeout to interrupt the momentum of the game and rethink strategy and this must have worked as the Vikings’ rampage was stanched and Connah’s Quay scored a nerve settling goal – Sykora’s second of the game – on 52 minutes.

Solihull were not done yet, however, and narrowed the lead once again on 54 minutes but a strike from Martin Stolicny restored the daylight between the two teams and the Cobras were able to hold off some late pressure to secure the 9-7 victory.

After the match, the Most Valuable Player (MVP) awards were presented to Slavomir Sykora for Connah’s Quay and Michael Rodger for Solihull.

The Connah’s Quay Cobras are next in action Sunday 25th February when they take on the Telford Spartans in a challenge match at Deeside Leisure Centre, 8.30pm face off.