Last-gasp Lakeside Hammers keep hopes alive
PUBLISHED: 22:58 01 September 2016 | UPDATED: 22:58 01 September 2016
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King’s Lynn 48 Lakeside Hammers 42
Lakeside Hammers kept their Elite League play-off hopes alive as they snatched a last-gasp consolation point in defeat at King’s Lynn.
The Vortex Hammers looked set to have their season come to a premature end, but some heat 15 heroics from captain Andreas Jonsson saved the day for the Purfleet club.
It means the Hammers head into Friday’s home meeting against the Stars knowing another win is a must to keep the pressure on fellow top-four hopefuls Swindon.
And club coach Kelvin Tatum is confident his side can do just that after being encouraged by a rare point on the road.
He said: “After giving King’s Lynn a head start, we battled back really well. We got ourselves in front with a 5-1 in heat 10 and then came the interval.
“The track changed a little bit after that and we just couldn’t get enough back to get the win.
“For the first two laps of heat 15, King’s Lynn were sitting on a 5-1 and our season was over.
“But Andreas (Jonsson) played a true captain’s role and he rode like his life depended on it to force his way through for a vital second place.
“We’ve got the minimum of what we came for and it could be a vital consolation point.
“However, we seriously could have got all four points here tonight because we were in some really good positions at times and just didn’t hold on.
“But I can’t fault the effort of the team; they knew what was at stake tonight and their performance on track showed that.
“Now we move onto tomorrow’s home meeting against the Stars and we know three points are an absolute must.”
Reserve Lewis Kerr top scored for the Hammers as he bagged three crucial race wins against his former club.
Swedish star Jonsson picked up five second places, including in that hard-fought heat 15, to ultimately claim the all-important point for the Hammers.
Edward Kennett recovered from a last place in his opening ride to reel off three straight wins while guest Danny King scored eight points for his efforts.
Lewis Bridger, Richard Lawson and guest reserve Danny Halsey all had below-par nights, but their points proved vital in keeping Lakeside’s play-off hopes alive.
Stars: Niels-Kristian Iversen 12, Nicklas Porsing 9+1, Kai Huckenbeck 9, Robert Lambert 8, Carl Wilkinson 5, James Sarjeant 4+3, Troy Batchelor 1.
Hammers: Lewis Kerr 11, Andreas Jonsson 10+1, Edward Kennett 9, Danny King 8, Lewis Bridger 2, Richard Lawson 1+1, Daniel Halsey 1.