The BCD Solway Sharks travelled to North Wales on Sunday evening for their final league fixture of the season but at the end of the day had to be satisfied with a point as the Deeside Dragons kept their hopes of avoiding relegation alive with a tremendous comeback to earn a four-four tie.
For much of the first period the Sharks play was somewhat sluggish and uncoordinated as the seemed to suffer from bus legs and the Dragons took advantage of this to lead by a single goal at the first break as Filip Supa (07:18) neatly converted Scott McKenzie's pass from close range.
Coach Scott McMeeken mast have read the riot act during the interval as Solway came out for the second period with all guns blazing and took just twenty-nine seconds to level the scores when Marc Fowley (20:29) rounded off a crisp move up the left involving Joe Coulter and Kim Miettinen. Worse was to come for the home side as six minutes later Duncan Speirs (26:58) converted Stuart Kerr's pass to give the Sharks their first lead of the night and Jurag Senko (34:11) made it three-one when he fired home from Daniel Abercrombie on a delayed penalty call. The game looked to be won when Duncan Speirs (35:45) collected a loose pass and expertly found the net to give Solway a three goal advantage but a powerplay goal from James Parsons (38:23) with ninety seconds left in the session gave Deeside some hope.
Knowing that they needed at least a draw from the game the Dragons finally showed some fire in the final period and took the game to the Sharks at every opportunity with player-coach Scott McKenzie seemingly at the heart of everything and his four assists on the night were vital to his teams cause. With nearly five minutes of the session gone Filip Supa (44:35) had the home fans on their feet when he converted McKenzie's pass and that's where they remained for the remainder of the game.
Whatever coach McKenzie said during his time-out worked almost immediately as with just under two minutes to go he and Matty Wainwright combines to set up Jordan Bannon (58:04) to score the equaliser. A win would have been nice for Deeside but it was more important not to loose so the remaining seconds must have felt like hours for the fans in the stands but survive they did and deservedly so. Now the must beat Blackburn away next Saturday to avoid automatic relegation and earn a two-legged promotion-relegation play-off.
Man of the Match for the Sharks was presented to Stevie Moore.
Full match details can be found here.
Saturday's numbers were 1, 2, 11 & 16. There was no jackpot winner. The Sharks Lotto Jackpot will begin next season £2,000.
The BCD Solway Sharks ended their home season on a high on Saturday evening and maintained their momentum heading towards the play-off's with an excellent ten-nil win over the Blackburn Hawks at the Shark Tank.
The lack-lustre Hawks may have had one eye on the next day's final league game of the season but they easily held their own in a first period where play constantly swung from end to despite failing to produce a goal.
The second session seemed to be shaping up in much the same way and it took almost until the mid-way point in the match for Daniel Abercrombie (28:27) to open the scoring for Solway when he converted from close range. Invigorated by this the Sharks began to press hard and Ben Edmonds (32:31) was soon on hand to double the home sides advantage and a laser from left point from Kim Miettinen (38:09) gave Solway a comfortable three-nil lead at the second break.
In the final period the Sharks stepped up a gear and ran in a further seven goals without reply as the Hawks put up very little resistance. Scorers in the third period for Solway were: Stevie Moore (43:48 & 58:20), James Hutchinson (48:47), Marc Fowley (51:50), Connor Henderson (52:06), Struan Tonnar (55:13 PP) and Juraj Senko (57:50)
The Man of the Match Awards were presented to netminder Calum Hepburn with a thirty-five shot shut-out for the Sharks and to Nicholas Oliver for the Hawks.
Full match details can be found here.
Tickets for the NIHL North Playoff Weekend are now available and can be ordered through Les Maxwell at Sharkey’s Bar from this Saturday (25th February).
The Playoff Weekend takes place on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th April and features the top four teams from both the Moralee and Laidler Conferences. Saturday consists of four semi-finals with doors opening at 9:30am in time for the first game at 10:30am with the final game facing off at 7:30pm. On Sunday the doors will open at 11:00am and the day will begin with the NIHL North Awards taking place on centre ice at 12:00pm followed by the Laidler and Moralee finals facing off at 1:30pm and 4:30pm respectively.
Full weekend tickets are priced at £36.00 for Adults and £18.00 for those aged 15 and under. There will not be day tickets or family tickets available, only full weekend tickets.
Tickets will also go on General Sale on Wednesday 1st March – details of this will be released on that date via the EIHA website.
We are pretty PUMPED to announce that Martin and Colin Grubb together with Elite Goalies (aka EG) will be bringing a goalie camp to the U.K. next summer at the Dumfries IceBowl on August 7th-10th.
The camp will be led by Thomas Speer who is a three time Kelly Cup champion (ECHL) and he is the Goalie coach for the Allen Americans. He is also the Director of Youth Goalie Development for the Dallas Stars and Goalie coach/scout for the NAHL Whicita Falls Wildcats.
Furthermore we will be bringing two other coaches who currently play AHL and attend their respective NHL teams training camps!!
We will be bringing the most Experienced coaching staff a goalie camp in the U.K. has EVER had!!!