Ice Hockey: MK Thunder 4 Raiders 3
PUBLISHED: 21:01 03 March 2019
Shortstaffed Everyone Active Raiders fell to a disappointing defeat against lowly MK Thunder in National League Division One on Sunday.
Raiders travelled with just 12 skaters and two goalies, following their 6-0 loss in Basingstoke the night before, and saw Ollie Baldock binned for hooking after just 39 seconds.
But they survived the shorthanded spell and opened the scoring through Filip Sedivy’s unassisted goal in the eighth minute.
Blaho Novak and Juraj Huska were off target with further efforts, while Jack Cooper had a shot blocked and Julian Smith’s long-range attempt flew wide.
Coopers was called for tripping to hand Thunder another power play chance and Rio Grinell-Parke sent a hard shot past the post before Samuel Talbot levelled, assisted by Ross Bowers and Tomas Rubes.
Jordan Lawday made a good save to deny Aaron Connolly from Huska’s pass, while Ben Clements held on to Ross Green’s long shot as the first period ended all square despite Raiders dominating the shot count 17-7.
Lawday kicked out a Baldock shot early in the middle session, before the hosts took the lead with an unassisted goal from Joe Edwards.
And Lawday made a good block on Huska’s first-time shot, before also thwarting Smith.
Bowers blocked a Liam Chong attempt, then fired wide himself at the other end, before Clements denied Rubes.
Penalties against Brandon Ayliffe and Logan Prince, 33 seconds apart, left the sides skating 4-on-4 and Baldock’s left wing attempt flew wide before Sean Barry had a shot kicked away by Lawday on a brief Raiders power play.
Lawday kicked out a Cooper shot before Tom Mboya was binned for hooking and Connolly and Huska went close on the power play.
Another hooking penalty, against Greg Randall, put Raiders back on the power play and Novak was denied at the far post from Huska’s pass, before Trevor Leblanc was given a 2+10 penalty for checking to the head.
A slashing call against Green gave Raiders 79 seconds with a two-man advantage but they could not capitalise and saw Connolly denied by Lawday in the final minute of the session, during which Raiders again dominated the shot count by a 19-7 margin.
Lawday saved from Sedivy early in the final session, while Clements kept out Rubes at the other end.
But Novak was then ejected with a 5+game penalty for high sticks and Ayliffe was binned for charging just 28 seconds later, with Thunder converting early on the power play as Rubes beat Clements.
The hosts struck again a little over a minute later through Edwards, forcing Raiders to call a timeout, and Huska netted a second goal for the visitors with six minutes remaining, before Green was binned for tripping.
Huska had a shot from the left wing blocked and Connolly saw an effort deflected wide, while Cooper was also just off target with a shot through traffic.
But after Thunder returned to full strength, Ayliffe made it a one-goal game with an unassisted goal with two and a half minutes left.
Clements was removed for an extra skater in the final minute as Raiders tried to tie it up and force overtime, with Ayliffe and Barry going close as the hosts held on.
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