The BCD Solway Sharks travelled down to Telford on Saturday and ended 2017 in the best possible way with a thrilling five-four overtime victory over the Tigers.
In a thrilling match where neither team was able to dominate play for any length of time the Sharks opened the scoring when Connor and Scott Henderson combined to set up Daniel Abercrombie (08:25) to provide the finishing touch. The Tigers top line, however, was quick to respond and Richard Plant and Daniel Mitchell were the spark that allowed Jason Silverthorn (10:46) to level the scores. As the first period edged towards its conclusion the home side then took the lead for the first time when Scott McKenzie was the provider for Joe Miller (16:59) to score in his final game before retirement.
Play remained close at the beginning of the second period with no quarter asked or given by either side but the home support were given the chance to cheer when Jason Silverthorn (27:55) extended their lead after being set up by Jonathon Weaver and Richard Plant. Within seconds of the re-start the Sharks were on a powerplay and Struan Tonnar provided the ammunition for Duncan Speirs (28:51 PP) to narrow the gap to one with a sweetly struck shot. With their tails up the Sharks went after the equaliser and it came two minutes later when Vaclav Kolarik passed to Connor Henderson (31:11) to find the net and tie the game at three.
With the second interval approaching the home side once more took the lead when Daniel Rose and Joe Miller combined to present Adam Jones (38:40) with a shooting opportunity with which he made no mistake. Just after this in an unfortunate accident Calum Hepburn was injured when a player fell on his leg in a goalmouth scramble and young Lewis Dolan from the Under 20’s took his place between the pipes.
For much of the third period the Sharks poked and prodded as they looked for the key to unlock the Tigers defence while at the back they worked hard to protect their rookie netminder while Telford looked to attack whenever possible while keeping their own back door firmly closed. With seven minutes gone in the session Solway got their reward when Marek Charvat (47:01) converted Stevie Moore’s pass to level the scores at four. From then until the end of regulation play both sides had chances to claim the points but neither side could find the magic touch in front of goal and the game progressed to three-on-three sudden-death overtime.
After a couple of scares at either end of the ice the puck fell to Connor Henderson in his own defensive zone and he passed inside to Iain Bowie just inside his own blueline. Alertly the Solway marksman spotted Marek Charvat (62:18) slipping unseen behind the Tigers defence and immediately split the Telford rearguard with an astute pass up centre-ice. Collecting the pass just outside the home blue line Charvat still had a lot to do but he quickly closed in on goal, pulled to his left and slipped his game-winning shot below the netminders despairing dive.
The Man of the Match Awards were presented to Connor Henderson for the Sharks and to Joe Miller for the Tigers.