London Raiders suffer late sting in Bracknell
PUBLISHED: 21:02 11 February 2017 | UPDATED: 21:02 11 February 2017
Bracknell Hornets 4 London Raiders 4
London Raiders had to settle for a National League point after late drama against bottom club Bracknell.
Returning to action after a weekend off, the visitors raced into a 3-0 lead in the first period, but saw Hornets hit back to draw level early in the final period.
Young defenceman Callum Burnett then looked to have won it for Raiders late on, with his first goal for the club, but Danny Hughes denied them with a late equaliser as honours finished even.
Raiders took to the ice without Alan Lack, but the game was barely two minutes old when Stewart Tait put them ahead, assisted by Slavomir Buda.
And the visitors doubled their lead in the fifth minute when Sam Roberts netted, assisted by Tait and Marek Nahlik.
Former Hornet Brandon Miles made it 3-0 in the 10th minute, with Nahlik and Thomas Beesley picking up the helpers, before Julian Smith was called for hooking.
But Raiders killed off the penalty and also survived another shorthanded spell after a call was made against Miles before the end of the opening period.
The home side hit back through Conor Redmond after three minutes of the middle session, but then fell foul of referee Tom Stephenson to hand Raiders a powerplay chance.
Bracknell killed off the penalty, though, and closed the gap to a single goal after Ben Ealey-Newman netted their second in the 33rd minute to set up a tense finale.
And although Raiders killed off a tripping penalty against Tait early in the final frame, the Hornets drew level as Ealey-Newman netted his second goal of the night.
The match remained all square until less than four minutes to go when Raiders regained the lead through Burnett, although the unhappy Bracknell players made their feelings known to the officials.
But their mood was improved when Hughes netted to tie it up once again with 60 seconds remaining as the shares were spoiled.
Raiders are back on the road on Sunday evening when they visit newly-crowned champions Chelmsford at the Riverside Ice Arena (6.30pm).
Scorers, Bracknell: Ben Ealey-Newman 2+1 Dan Hughes 1+1 Conor Redmond 1 Michal Oravec* 0+3 William Stead 0+1 Tom Fisher 0+1 Joshua Martin 0+1.
Raiders: Stewart Tait 1+1 Sam Roberts 1 Brandon Miles 1 Callum Burnett 1 Marek Nahlik* 0+2 Thomas Beesley 0+1 Slavomir Buda* 0+1.
Penalty minutes: Bracknell 2 Raiders 6.
Shots faced: Dan Milton (B) 12-11-10=33-4 Euan King (L) 7-7-19=33-4.
Referee: Tom Stephenson.