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London Raiders scalped again

PUBLISHED: 11:38 31 January 2016 | UPDATED: 11:38 31 January 2016

London Raiders goalie Michael Gray was their man of the match against Chelmsford (pic: John Scott)

London Raiders goalie Michael Gray was their man of the match against Chelmsford (pic: John Scott)

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National League: London Raiders 1 Chelmsford 4

Raiders Sam Roberts and Chelmsford's Darren Brown (pic: John Scott)Raiders Sam Roberts and Chelmsford's Darren Brown (pic: John Scott)

London Raiders put up a brave fight but could not avoid falling to a sixth successive defeat against leaders Chelmsford this season as their winless streak extended to nine matches last night.

Goalie Michael Gray was named man of the match for the home side after facing a whopping 59 shots, as opposite number and former Raider Euan King faced 18 at the other end of the ice.

The hosts were missing Frankie Harvey, TJ Fillery, Rob Jenner, Rio Grinell-Parke and Liam Chong, while Chieftains arrived without Julian Smith and their playing jerseys, borrowing some warm-up shirts from Raiders.

After a delayed start, the two sides produced a high tempo opening period and Raiders had an early powerplay chance when Sean Barry was called for hooking.

Chelmsford's Lukas Zatopek holds off Raiders forward Seb Downing (pic; John Scott)Chelmsford's Lukas Zatopek holds off Raiders forward Seb Downing (pic; John Scott)

Former Raider Billy Phillips and Mason Webster exchanged words, before Seb Downing was binnned for high sticks.

But neither side could find a breakthrough as the first session ended goalless, with Chieftains dominating the shot count 11-4.

Raiders were first on the scoreboard with barely two minutes of the middle period played, though, as Michal Oravec skated out from behind King’s net to pop the puck home.

But they could not capitalise on a slashing penalty against Charlie Phillips soon after and saw Chieftains level just past the midway mark through former Romford junior Olegs Lascenko.

The gloves came off towards the end of the period as Webster and Charlie Phillips clashed and each picked up 14 minutes in penalties.

Chelmsford captain Anthony Leone was binned for holding seconds later, but Raiders again failed to make the extra man count and saw John Connolly binned for tripping against his former club before the end of the session.

Chieftains edged in front after four minutes of the final period as Darren Brown produced a clinical finish.

But the match remained in the balance until the final five minutes, when Cameron Bartlett made it 3-1.

A high sticking penalty against Webster then gave the visitors a late powerplay chance and they made it count as man of the match Brown converted for his second to give the final scoreline more gloss.

Seventh-placed Raiders return to action next Saturday (February 6) when Invicta visit Lee Valley for a South East Cup match, before a trip to Chelmsford for another league meeting the following night.

Scorers, Raiders; Michal Oravec* 1 Mason Webster 0+1.

Chieftains: Darren Brown 2+1 Cameron Bartlett 1+2 Olegs Lascenko 1 Lukas Zatopek* 0+2 Matt Turner 0+1 James Ayling 0+1.

Penalty minutes: Raiders 22 Chieftains 20.

Shots on goal: Michael Gray (L) 11-16-32=59-4 Euan King (C) 4-11-3=18-1.

Referee: Rene Ross.

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