London Raiders left well beaten by champions Chelmsford
PUBLISHED: 20:13 18 February 2017 | UPDATED: 20:13 18 February 2017
London Raiders 3 Chelmsford Chieftains 11
London Raiders slumped to an emphatic home defeat against National League champions Chelmsford as five-goal Juraj Huska returned to haunt his former club and inspire a double-digit romp.
Raiders, beaten 5-3 by Chieftains at the Riverside Ice Arena six days earlier, took to the Lee Valley ice without import Marek Nahlik and defenceman Matt France and found themselves behind with just 19 seconds gone as Grant Bartlett netted.
JJ Pitchley picked up a 10-minute misconduct penalty in the sixth minute and the visitors doubled their advantage through Huska just 27 seconds later.
Captain Tom Davis hit back for Raiders on a breakaway soon after, assisted by Slavomir Buda, but Huska struck twice in 91 seconds, the second of them while his side were shorthanded, to make it 4-1 at the first break.
The middle period was only 45 seconds old when Grant Bartlett got his side’s fifth goal of the game, with Hammond converting on a powerplay chance soon after when Alan Lack was binned.
A penalty against Julian Smith was killed off by the home side, but Chelmsford went 7-1 up when Huska converted on a breakaway in the 26th minute.
And Lack went back to the penalty box after clashing with Oliver Baldock just past the midway mark, before Bartlett completed his treble with Chelmsford’s eighth goal of the night.
Baldock and goalie Ben Clements were called for penalties seconds apart to give Raiders a 5-on-3 advantage for 1.49, but they were unable to make the numerical superiority count in that time and had salt rubbed into the wound when Danny Hammond potted Chelmsford’s ninth in the penultimate minute of the session, before Anthony Leone put the visitors into double figures.
Raiders lost Pitchley to a roughing minor early in the final period, but they managed to avoid any further damage in terms of the scoreline until the 56th minute when Huska netted another shorthanded effort, with Sean Barry serving a minor penalty.
Raiders skipper Davis converted on the powerplay to claim his second goal of the evening, assisted by Thomas Beesley, who then netted the home side’s third goal himself on a night to forget for Alan Blyth’s men.
They will look to set the record straight when they travel to Streatham on Sunday evening, but the omens are not good as they have failed to find the net on their previous two trips to south London this season, losing 2-0 back in September and then recording a rare 0-0 draw before Christmas.