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Watkins Frustrated With Defensive Lapses

Hexagon Telford Tigers took to home ice after a disappointing defeat in Yorkshire to Leeds Knights the previous evening. Tigers had taken a two goal lead against the current league champions but had fell apart under pressure and had conceded five goals. Tigers has also lost Jake Price through suspension meaning the already stretched roster was down to the bare bones. Youngster Ryan Leese stepped up to the National League side to assist in defence.

Tigers took on a Peterborough side they had failed to beat in the league this season.

An even first period saw both teams score. Peterborough opened the scoring in the fifteenth minute with a gift. A bad pass across the Tigers’ defensive zone straight to Lukas Sladkovsky was punished with a shot past the unsighted Brad Day who was caught out of position. Telford’s frustration grew as Jesse Sutton was given an unsporting conduct penalty directly after the goal. The power play for Peterborough followed but it was the home side who would score. Scott McKenzie took the puck into the Phantoms’ defensive zone and lost control but it fell perfectly for Deakan Fielder who sent a low shot across the ice into the bottom right hand corner of Jordan Marr’s goal.

Tigers took control of the game early in the second period and were dominant early on. Vladimir Luka gave Telford the lead in the fourth minute of the period. Jaden Peca found the unmarked Fin Howells in the slot, Howells’ shot was saved by Marr but Luka was on hand to shoot the rebound into the open net. Peterborough lost their poise and gave Tigers a 5-on-3 power play. With Joe Gretton and Ivan Nordstrom in the penalty box, Telford took full advantage of the two extra attackers. Luka sent a pass low down to Sutton who was at the side of the goal and was able to jam the puck home past Marr before he could react.

Tigers had the ascendancy and then shot themselves in the foot. Peca was given a double minor penalty gifting the visitors back to back power plays and they scored on both. Ales Padelek shot into the roof of the net from close range and then, despite some heroics from Brad Day, Austin Mitchell-King scored on the rebound to equalise.

As the period was ending, Telford committed another defensive howler when an errant pass across the defensive zone went straight to Ralfs Circenis who accepted the early Xmas present and shot over Day’s shoulder to give the Phantoms the lead heading into the third period.

During the third period Telford pushed for an equaliser but were always liable to be caught out at the other end. With seven minutes gone, the Phantoms made Tigers’ task even more difficult. Jasper Foster broke in on goal and shot past Brad Day to double the visitors lead.  

Tigers had one final chance to reduce the deficit when Brad Bowering was given a double minor penalty for holding and unsporting conduct. But Tigers’ power play unit was not firing on all cylinders and barely threatened the Phantoms’ goal.

With the clock winding down, Peterborough sealed the win with a goal from Jarvis Hunt as Telford fell to back to back defeats this weekend.

Final Score: Hexagon Telford Tigers 3  Peterborough Phantoms 6
Scorers: Deakan Fielder, Vladimir Luka and Jesse Sutton
Man of the Match: Louie Newell

After the game Head Coach Tom Watkins commented, “That was a hard one take, a very frustrating evening from my point of view and very similar to last night. We got into a good position as a team, gave up a two goal lead and then conceded five unanswered goals once again through individual mistakes and individual indiscipline which was extremely costly.  

We are already missing a number of key guys through injury and suspension. We can’t put ourselves in a position to be punished by the officials and then subsequently the opposition.”

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