Sunday 30 April 2017

Widnes Wild Souvenir Booklet - Available To Pre-Order Now!

A Year In the Wild - The 2016/17 season following Widnes Wild in the NIHL North Laidler Conference
A special souvenir booklet to celebrate Widnes Wild’s first trophy win in their relatively short 4 year history, featuring match reports from all Widnes Wild games for the season and game sheet information and photos as available.

It also includes end of season stats, interviews, a review of the Wild women’s team’s season and much more besides.  

Available to pre-order now – copies will be mailed out at the end of the summer break.

Selling price £7.50 inc free UK P&P

2017 NIHL Yearbook "Earlybird Offer" Announced

The new 2017 edition of the Ice Hockey Review NIHL Yearbook is now available to pre-order!  By taking advantage of our great “earlybird” offer, you can benefit from a very special price and also be among the first to receive your copy when they are mailed out in October.

2017 NIHL Yearbook  - earlybird offer: £8.00 inc free UK p&p  (cheaper than last year..!)

Please note: this price is for UK orders only and includes free UK postage and packing.  For overseas orders, please drop us a line ( HERE ) before ordering.

For more details about the 2017 NIHL Yearbook and its contents, click HERE

Monday 24 April 2017

Widnes Wildcats Announce Summer Cup Fixtures

The Widnes Wildcats have announced their Summer Cup fixtures for the 2017 competition.   The first home game is Sunday 7th May at Silver Blades Widnes when they face the Whitley Bay Islanders in a 4.30pm face off.

All of the home games are on Sundays and are mainly 4.30pm face offs, although the game against Solihull Vikings on 28th May faces off at 8.30pm after the Riverside Raiders home game. The following home game – on 11th June against the Durham Dragons - is also an 8.30pm face off. Admission to all home games is free!

The full list is as follows (home games are in bold):
7th May: home vs Whitley Bay Islanders – 4.30pm
14th May: home vs Blackburn Falcons – 4.30pm
28th May: home vs Solihull Vikings – 8.30pm  (after Raiders game)
11th June: home vs Durham Dragons – 8.30pm
18th June: away @ Solihull Vikings – 7.30pm
1st & 2nd July: RecFest @ Ice Sheffield
16th July: home vs Kingston Cobras – 4.30pm
22nd July: away @ Kingston Cobras – 5pm
23rd July: away @ Blackburn Falcons – 6pm
30th July: home vs Grimsby Lightning – 4.30pm (double points)
5th Aug 5th: away @ Durham Dragons – 12 noon
6th Aug: home vs Cleveland Comets – 4.30pm
19th Aug: away @ Cleveland Comets – 5.30pm
20th Aug: away @ Whitley Bay Islanders – 12 noon.

You can find out more about this year’s summer cup competition via the Facebook page: or the website at

Monday 17 April 2017

Puckstop Summer Classic: Raiders Keep 100% Record After Seagulls Win

Sunday 16th April 2017 – Puckstop Summer Classic
Riverside Raiders (Widnes) 6 – Wyre Seagulls (Blackburn) 2
Period Scores: 2-0, 1-0, 3-2
Penalties In Minutes: Raiders 6 – Seagulls 10

Raiders Scoring:  Gez Lewis 3+0, Sam Plant 1+2, Owen Tennant 1+1, Tom Yates 1+0, Adam Murphy, Ben Donkin, Elizabeth Wright all 0+1

The Riverside Raiders consolidated their position at the top of the Summer Classic league table with an impressive 6-2 win over Wyre Seagulls at Silver Blades Widnes on Sunday.

Following on from their 1-5 win away in Sheffield the previous week, this gives them a 100% start to their campaign in the 5-team league which also includes teams from Sheffield, Grimsby and another team from Blackburn. 

The Raiders made a flying start to the game, taking the lead after just 1 minute with a fine strike by Gez Lewis, assisted by Sam Plant.  A little under 2 minutes later, it was 2-0 to the Raiders as Lewis, again, picked up a rebound off the Wyre netminder and slotted the puck into the net.

Once they had got over this initial setback, the Wyre Seagulls upped their game and put some impressive plays together themselves. Both teams spent the remainder of the period trying to not to give anything away and the score remained 2-0 at the first break.

The Seagulls looked much better all round in the second period and looked the more likely to score until they started picking up penalties, which broke their momentum and left them shorthanded.

The Raiders scored their third goal at 32.38 – a well taken individual effort by Owen Tennant – and the game looked to be gradually slipping away from the visitors.

The third period started off in much the same vein as the second with the Wyre Seagulls quickest out of the blocks.  They thought they had scored their opening goal just 19 seconds from the restart but the referee had already blown the whistle to halt the play before the puck crossed the line.

A 4th goal for the Raiders came at 44.55 as Tom Yates fired in his first goal for the team after some excellent skating around the net by Adam Murphy and it looked as if the home side had this game well and truly in the bag. A powerplay opportunity on a slashing penalty against the Seagulls saw them push forward to try and extend their lead but they were caught out by a Wyre breakaway and the away side scored their first goal, short-handed, to pull the score back to 4-1.    

If any nerves had begun to jangle on the home bench at this point, they were quickly dispelled when Gez Lewis scored his hattrick goal – and the Raiders’ 5th - with just under 10 minutes left in the game.

The Raiders thought they had scored again just 2 minutes later when the puck crossed the Wyre goal-line. Unfortunately, the Seagulls netminder also went into the net and, with all the accompanying pushing and shoving around the goal crease, the goal was not allowed.

Less than a minute after that, however, it was pretty much all over as Sam Plant picked up on some great forward passing from Owen Tennant and Elizabeth Wright to score the Raiders’ 6th goal.

The clock ticked down slowly towards the Raiders’ victory but much credit must go to the visitors who put up a battling performance throughout and never gave up for a second.  Their tenacity eventually paid off – albeit too late to affect the result -when they scored their second goal of the game with just 2 seconds left in the final period.

The result leaves the Riverside Raiders top of the Summer Classic league table with 4 points from their 2 games so far. 

The Raiders are next in action on Saturday 13th May when they travel to the east coast to face the Grimsby Stormers, and their next home game is the following weekend – on Sunday 21st May - when they play Grimsby at Silver Blades Widnes.

Before that, however, the Widnes Wildcats team are in competitive action as they play their first home game in the Summer Cup competition on Sunday 7th May against Cleveland Comets at Silver Blades Widnes.  Face off is at 4.30pm and admission is free.   

Monday 10 April 2017

Aces & Metros Reunion Game At Altrincham - 8th April 2017

Photo by Dean Edgar - see bottom of post for list of names
Saturday 8th April 2017 – Silver Blades Altrincham
Altrincham Aces & Trafford Metros Reunion Game
Black Team 13 – White Team 9

Black Team - Bench coach: Dave Shepherd
Stephen Shepherd, Nick Crawley (2 goals), Mark Thomas, Ged Smith (4 goals), Paul Fleury (2 goals), Stephen Elliot (1 goal), Brian Collier, Ian Hough, Steve Fellows (4 goals), Bernie Snagg, Arran Richardson, Kevin Cassidy, Dave Clancy - nm (SOG 48)

White Team - Bench Coach: Tony Lacey
Alan Hough (1 goal), Ari Mikkolla, Greg Allen (3 goals), Russ Richardson (1 goal), Simon Mills (1 goal)
Gary Shearman, Willy Broadhurst (2 goals), Martyn Barratt, Chris Mills, Paul Morgan, Steve Nurse, Andy Bennett, Ian Broomfield, Billy Price (1 goal), John McGarrigle - nm (SOG 50)

What started off as an idea for a bit of a fun scrimmage between a few old teammates turned into something much bigger as the first Former Altrincham Aces and Trafford Metros Players Reunion game took place at Silver Blades Altrincham on Saturday.

This was the first meeting up for many of those old players since the farewell tournament when the old Devonshire Road rink was closed in 2003 and there were lots of great names from the good old days on view.

The timing of the game was rather unfortunate as the date chosen coincided with the appearance of the modern day Altrincham Aces in the NIHL North Laidler Conference play offs in Sheffield for the very first time but, luckily, their semi-final game against Widnes Wild faced off at 10.30 in the morning meaning that there was plenty of time for devotees to race back across the Pennine to be back for this event in the afternoon.

The match brought together players who had played in the Southern League days of the 1970s such as Bernie Snagg and Ged Smith along with lots of memorable names from the 80s and 90s teams as well.  It was refereed by Paul Bayliss who played for Aces and Metros teams for over 20 years and went on to be a well-respected manager and coach at the Altrincham rink.

Long term management duo Keith Purvis and Graham Horlock were in attendance - along with other former players, friends, family members and hockey fans from across the north west who wanted to support the occasion - and former Aces, Metros, Oxford  and Blackburn import Ari Pekka Mikkola even came all the from Finland to play in the game.  

Rather than having “Aces v Metros” - which would, in fact, been very difficult to arrange as many of the players had played for both teams over the years – the players were divided into two roughly equal teams wearing black or white shirts.

As is the case with such occasions, the result on the ice was relatively unimportant when compared to the nostalgia and camaraderie that accompanied it off-ice but, for the record, the Black team won 13-9 with Ged Smith and Steve Fellows both top-scoring with 4 goals each. Greg Allen was the top scorer for the White team with 3 strikes.

There was also a raffle and £170 was raised in aid of the Trafford Tornados Junior club.

Organiser Stephen Shepherd said: “The game was played in a competitive spirit - bearing in mind it was originally just meant to be a group of lads that got together for a scrimmage. I really enjoyed the whole occasion. A lot of people who used to come and watch us play turned up, which was great, and people have suggested that we should do it again.  If we do – I think we’ll need to put more planning into it!”

Aces & Metros Reunion Game Photo by Dean Edgar

Back Row, Andy Bennett, Simon Mills, Steve Nurse, Ari Mikkola, Ian Broomfield, Paul Broadhurst, Greg Allen, Billy Price, Alan Hough Steven Fellows, Mark Thomas, Tony Lacey, Paul Morgan, David Shepherd, John McGarrigle, Stephen Elliott, Ian McDade.

Front Row, Gary Shearman, Dave Clancy, Bernie Snagg, Ged Smith, Nick Crawley, Kev Cassidy, Russ Richardson, Stephen Shepherd, Arran Richardson, Brian Collier.

Riverside Raiders Win Summer Classic Opener In Sheffield

Photo by James Birtwistle
Saturday 8th April 2017 – Puckstop Summer Classic
Sheffield Ice Tigers 1 – Riverside Raiders (Widnes) 5
Period Scores:  0-2, 0-2, 1-1
Penalties In Minutes:  Tigers 14 – Raiders 8

Raiders Scoring: Anthony Hughes 2+0, Gez Lewis 2+1, Sam Plant 1+0, Charlie Perry (nm), Peter O’Mahony, Jordan Birtwistle, Owen Tennant all 0+1

The Widnes based Riverside Raiders got their Puckstop Summer Classic campaign off to a winning start with a 1-5 win away to Sheffield Ice Tigers in the Steel City on Saturday night.

Because the game was arranged for the same day that the iceSheffield venue was staging 4 semi-final games in the NIHL North play offs, the Raiders’ game didn’t face off until 10.30pm and finished well after midnight.  

The Raiders scored the first goal of the game after 11 minutes through Anthony Hughes – who was playing his first ever game – assisted by Jordan Birtwistle, and that goal remained the difference between the two teams at the first break.

Two more goals for the Raiders in the second period – by Gez Lewis (31.04 – assist Charlie Perry) and Hughes again (34.10 – assist Peter O’Mahony) – pretty much put the game beyond the reach of their hosts and a fourth goal from Lewis – his second of the game - at 45.19 (asst Owen Tennant) looked to have killed the game off.

The Ice Tigers scored a consolation goal at 51.21 while the Raiders were shorthanded on a roughing penalty but the 4-goal advantage was restored at 54.48 when Sam Plant scored ,assisted by Lewis, to round off the scoring for the night.

The Riverside Raiders are in home action next Sunday 16th April when they face the Blackburn-based Wyre Seagulls in their next Summer Classic game at Silver Blades Widnes.  Face off is 4.30pm and admission is free.