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Raiders ready for Redskins test

PUBLISHED: 14:00 09 March 2014

Frankie Harvey netted a hat-trick in Raiders defeat at Invicta (pic: John Scott)

Frankie Harvey netted a hat-trick in Raiders defeat at Invicta (pic: John Scott)

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Cup: Invicta 7 Raiders 5

Raiders returned from a two-week break to come up short in the last match of their National League Cup group in Gillingham last night.

But forward AJ Smith is hoping another hard-working performance will stand them in good stead when they visit Streatham for a league match tonight (6.45pm).

He said: “It was a close fought game and a really good effort from the lads.

“I feel like it’s a game we could have won and the goals they scored I think we gifted to them through our own mistakes in the second period.

“But we came out in the third and pulled it back to within one goal before they scored an empty-netter with half a second left.

“In truth, it was a meaningless match in a cup competitions that neither team can win but it’s still gutting to come so close and not win.

“But it was a good warm-up for what is an important game at Streatham and hopefully we can learn from the mistakes we made and not make them again in Streatham, who are in really good form right now after their great comeback at Invicta last week.”

Invicta had let a five-goal lead slip against Streatham before losing on penalty shots a week earlier, but took the lead against Raiders with an early powerplay goal from Shaun Wild.

Charlie Phillips got the visitors back on terms early in the second period and Jakub Klima raced away for a shorthanded second against his former club to put Raiders ahead.

But Marek Nahlik levelled for Dynamos and Andy Smith put the hosts 3-2 up with another powerplay goal before ex-Raider Juraj Huska netted their fourth while shorthanded.

Nahlik made it 5-2 early in the final period, but Frankie Harvey hit back soon after with the first of his three goals.

Wild made it 6-3 with Invicta’s third powerplay goal of the night, as Billy Phillips served a 2+10 penalty for checking to the head, but Harvey kept Raiders hopes alive with his second.

Harvey completed his treble with four minutes left to make it a one-goal game and Raiders pulled goalie Michael Gray for an extra skater in the last minute, only to see Anthony Leone clear his own zone and find the vacant net for Invicta’s seventh.

Streatham, meanwhile, slipped to a 6-1 league defeat at leaders Chelmsford and Raiders will look to close the gap on fourth-placed Redskins tonight.

Danny Marshall’s men trail the south Londoners by three points, with a game in hand, and with the two sies on course to meet in next month’s play-offs, they will want to make a point to their rivals.

Scorers, Invicta: Shaun Wild 2+1, Marek Nahlik* 2+1 Andy Smith 1+3 Juraj Huska* 1+2 Anthony Leone 1+1 Peter Beerling 0+3 Danny Hammond 0+2 Arran Strawson 0+1.

Raiders: Frankie Harvey 3 Jakub Klima* 1+2 Charlie Phillips 1 Danny Marshall 0+2 AJ Smith 0+1 JJ McGrath 0+1 Tom Davis 0+1.

Shots on goal: David Jackson (Invicta) 49 Michael Gray (Raiders) 50 Empty net 1.

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