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Tigers Rue Slow Start to Game

Hexagon Telford Tigers took a long trip to Romford to take on the Raiders for the final time in the league this season. Tigers four game winning streak had ended last weekend with defeats to Peterborough and Leeds.

Injuries and suspension were hitting the team hard with the team short benched and still missing Joe Aston, Connor Lee, Aidan Wilson, Archie Hazeldine, James Smith and Matty Bloor. Telford added youngster Hal Griffiths to the squad as back up netminder. And Jake Price and Lucas Price were able to return to the line up.

A disappointing first period of the game saw the home side pepper the Tigers’ goal with shots and the only surprise was that the breakthrough took fourteen minutes. Raiders finally scored through Jesper Ericksson and dominated much of the opening 20 minutes to lead 1-0.

An improved second period saw the visitors equalise after five minutes. Fin Howells set up Vladimir Luka to level the game. But parity only lasted two minutes as the Raiders regained the lead with a goal from Tjay Anderson.

Harry Ferguson was given a harsh misconduct penalty midway through the second period, gifting the home side a power play. But for the second game running Tigers’ penalty kill came up with a short handed goal. Jesse Sutton broke away to score with a cool finish.

And just as had happened previously the teams were only level for two minutes as Raiders scored their third goal through Adam Laishram.

A close third period saw Telford push hard to gain an equaliser but were denied several times and Raiders sealed the win with an empty net goal from Coy Prevost in the dying seconds of the game.

Tigers fall to a third consecutive defeat and will be looking to bounce back in their next game against bottom of the table Bristol Pitbulls.

Final Score: Raiders 4 Hexagon Telford Tigers 2.

Scorers: Vladimir Luka and Jesse Sutton.

Man of the match: Brad Day.

After the game Head Coach Tom Watkins, commented, “We made a very slow start to the game and were not at our best in the first period. We didn’t manage their speed and forecheck well and our defence turned over far too many pucks in our defensive zone. Our forwards turned over far too many pucks in the neutral zone and at the blue line which saw us get out shot 21 to 4 which just can’t happen if you expect to compete. We were much improved in the second and third period and had several good chances to tie the game with a break away and some power play time but we just couldn’t get the goal we needed.”

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