Hexagon Telford Tigers returned to home ice after a loss on the road in Sheffield in their previous game. This was the final game of import forward Jesse Sutton’s suspension and also saw Jonathan Weaver, Nick Oliver, Ricky Plant, Sam Watkins, Joe Aston and Danny Rose unavailable. Tigers’ new import forward Jaden Peca was still unable to make his debut after signing earlier this week.
Telford found themselves under pressure from the first whistle and Hull hit the post with a shot on their first attack of the game. Once the first five minutes had gone by, the home side found their game and had a glorious chance when Connor Lee broke in on goal but Jordan McLaughlin made the save.
Tigers conceded twice in thirty seconds for the second game running when a long range shot from Tom Barry beat Brad Day low down. With their next attack, Hull added a second goal when Day’s save rebounded perfectly for Emil Svec to fire home.
With Tigers not taking the chances that came their way, Hull punished them again early in the second period. Sam Towner scoring after Tigers failed to clear the puck from their defensive zone.
A minute later Tigers finally made it onto the score board when Vladimir Luka pounced on a loose puck and shot low past McLaughlin. A penalty against Svec for interference presented Telford with a great chance to reduce the deficit. But a mix up between Rhodes Mitchell-King and Brad Day led to Hull scoring a short handed goal. Day came out of his goal to play the puck but Mitchell-King also went to play the puck and both ended up leaving it for the other one allowing Bobby Young to tap the puck into the empty net for Hull’s fourth goal.
Five minutes later, Tigers had a second goal. Luka was sent clear on goal and shot through McLaughlin’s legs to reduce the deficit further.
Hull restored a three goal lead minutes later when Svec scored his second of the game with a wrist shot from the slot.
With Tigers starting the third period three goals behind, they had it all to do and an early penalty for Declan Balmer for roughing gifted the home side a power play. Tigers pressured the Hull goal and Luka’s shot was spilled by McLaughlin allowing Scott McKenzie to bat the puck home from close range.
Tigers were creating chances but not having any luck in front of goal. But with eight minutes of the period left Telford had a fourth goal. Tigers did well to keep the puck in the offensive zone and Mitchell-King’s shot was saved and the rebound was bundled in by McKenzie for his second of the game.
With Hull under pressure, they lost their discipline and a needless high sticking penalty three minutes from the end of the third period for Nathan Salem gave Tigers a power play at a crucial time.
Mitchell King found Harry Ferguson unmarked in the slot and Ferguson smashed a wrist shot in off the post to draw the sides level and send the game into overtime.
A minute into overtime the comeback was complete. Ferguson and Fin Howells led a 2-on-1 breakaway and Ferguson hit a superb wrist shot low past McLaughlin to win the game for Telford.
Final Score: Hexagon Telford Tigers 6 Hull Seahawks 5 (after overtime).
Scorers: Vladimir Luka (2), Scott McKenzie (2) and Harry Ferguson (2).
Man of the match: Harry Ferguson.
After the game Head Coach Tom Watkins, commented, “There is no better drama than live sport that’s for sure!! You couldn’t write that script. With eight players missing that is a massive win.
We’ve had some remarkable results this season but with a three goal deficit going into the third period we were a very long shot to get the win. The whole team dug very deep to turn it around. We identified a plan going into the third period and the guys executed it brilliantly.
I keep saying that this team has some character, they are a very tight group and we have a very good roster when we have everyone healthy.
We’ve played with an import and several key players out of the line up pretty much since the first week of the season but still sit only one point out of first place.”