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Ice hockey: Raiders 3 Swindon 8

PUBLISHED: 19:37 12 January 2020 | UPDATED: 19:37 12 January 2020

Michael Gray was back in goal for Raiders against Swindon (pic John Scott)

Michael Gray was back in goal for Raiders against Swindon (pic John Scott)

Archant

Everyone Active Raiders were made to suffer at the hands of high-flying Swindon once again in the National League on Sunday.

Michael Gray returned in goal for Raiders, who were without Jack Flynn and Dan Scott but saw Erik Piatak have the first shot of the night blocked by Renny Marr.

Gray denied Tyler Vankleef, Chris Jones and Edgars Bebris, while Jake Sylvester had two attempts for the home side.

But Wildcats broke the deadlock in the eighth minute through Aaron Nell and doubled their advantage just over a minute late through Bebris.

Raiders hit back with a power play goal from Lukas Sladkovsky, after Tomasz Malasinski was binned for slashing, but then saw Sean Barry called for tripping.

Brandon Ayliffe squared matters with a shorthanded goal, though, as fe fired home at the far post from Olegs Lascenko's cross-ice pass, before Jones restored Swindon's lead while still enjoying a man advantage.

Ben Nethersell and Sam Bullas had late chances to add to the scoreline, before Neil Liddiard was called for holding an opponent's stick, to give Raiders power play time either side of the first break.

They could not capitalise and saw Gray deny Loris Taylor with a glove save, before Barry, Lascenko and Sylvester tried their luck to no avail.

Taylor and Callum Wells were binned on roughing minors to leave the sides skating 4-on-4 and Jones was called for hooking to give Raiders a power play once those penalties had expired.

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Sylvester saw a hard shot blocked by Marr before Swindon went 4-2 up through Bebris in the 33rd minute and swiftly added a fifth just 25 seconds later thanks to Vankleef.

Jack Cooper had a long shot stopped by Marr in the last minute of the middle session as Raiders were left with a mountain to climb in the final period.

Sylvester had an early attempt saved by Marr, while Sladkovsky saw a hard effort denied moments later.

And Novak had a shot blocked after Floyd Taylor was called for interference, before being binned himself for cross-checking.

Piatak was unable to take a chance that came his way while Raiders were shorthanded, but Vankleef broke clear to net Swindon's sixth soon after Novak's return to the ice.

And the visitors went back on the power play when Jacob Ranson was called for tripping with just over 11 minutes remaining in the match.

Novak followed for high sticks, giving Swindon 1,13 of 5-on-3, and Vankleef completed his hat-trick with their seventh goal of the night.

Another power play goal swiftly followed from Malasinski and Swindon replaced starting goalie Marr with Michael Crisp for the final six minutes.

Nethersell was called for slashing and Sylvester had a shot blocked by Godfrey during the power play, but Raiders grabbed a consolation third goal after the penalty expired through Novak.

It made no difference to the outcome as Raiders suffered their second defeat of the weekend, following Saturday's 5-3 reverse in Peterborough.

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