December 6 2013 Latest news:
Sunday, September 15, 2013
National League: Raiders 6 Solent 1
JJ Pitchley’s hat-trick led Raiders to a comfortable opening-night win at Lee Valley last night.
Following the closure of their Rom Valley Way rink earlier in the year, the club has been forced to relocate from Romford to east London.
But they remain the same organisation at their core, with the traditional gold and blue colours worn once more.
Player-coach Danny Marshall netted the first goal of their new era late in the first period, after Andrius Kaminskas and Grant Taylor had both received 2+10 penalties from referee Jurij Solovjovs.
And after Taylor doubled the home side’s lead in the 29th minute, Pitchley opened his account just 58 seconds later, as Nathan Pollard claimed his first point for the club with an assist.
Pollard was one of five debutants in the Raiders line-up, alongside fellow Peterborough youngster Dan Lane, the back-up goalie, veteran Canadian defenceman Dwayne Newman and former Romford juniors Jacob Ranson and Charlie Phillips, the younger brother of defenceman Billy.
Euan King returned between the pipes after knee surgery, having appeared in the doomed English Premier League campaign of 2009-10, and Dan Peters was also included to add to the eight appearances he made in the same season.
Raiders dominated the shot count 16-9 in the opening session, but had only Marshall’s 596th career goal to show for it.
Taylor and Pitchley’s quickfire double made it 3-0 at the second break and a hooking penalty against Alex Murray enabled Marshall to claim a fourth at 46:31.
Pitchley, who spent last season playing in the United States for the Dallas Snipers after scoring 15 points (7+8) in 47 games for Raiders in 2011-12, showed his eye for goal once more a minute later, with goalie King even picking up an assist.
And although King’s shutout hopes were ruined by Peter Curenko with less than nine minutes to play, GB under-20 international Pitchley had the final word as he completed his hat-trick with a late powerplay effort.
Raiders will certainly face tougher tests in the coming months, starting with the trip to Invicta next Sunday, but as opening nights go it was decent enough.
Raiders: Pitchley 3 Marshall 2 Taylor 1 Harvey 0+2 Pollard 0+2 Yardley 0+2 Buckman 0+1 Davis 0+1 Newman 0+1 Kaminskas 0+1 King 0+1.
Devils: Curenko 1 Murray 0+1 Abbott 0+1.
Christine Ohuruogu and Mo Farah have been nominated for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year.