Solway Sharks welcomed Bespoke Guardians Swindon Wildcats at the Dumfries Ice Bowl for two home fixtures last weekend.
Both teams before faceoff paid respects to Nottingham Panthers forward Adam Johnson after his tragic passing last Saturday.
Following some early Wildcat pressure, the Sharks capitalised on a misdirected pass and
Nolan Gardiner’s goal, assisted by Scott Henderson to take the lead. After falling behind
by one goal, the Wildcats had a few chances to respond but couldn’t find the back of the
net. The Wildcats did equalise after going on the powerplay with Russell Cowley, making
the score 1-1.
Another powerplay goal for the Wildcats, just as the Sharks were coming back to full
strength, made it 2-1 with a goal from Gael Lubwele. The Wildcats started the period
brightly and added the third goal with a goal for Chris Jones to make it 3-1. Just as
quickly as that goal went in, the Wildcats got their fourth goal of the evening; this time it
was Aaron Nell getting the puck past Calum Hepburn to make it 4-1.
Following the Wildcats’ two early goals, the Sharks began to get more puck possession,
which was rewarded with a second goal, scored by John Dunbar and assisted by Craig
Peacock and Kieran Hair, to make the score 4-2.
Both netminders were called upon and made some excellent stops as the period went on
to keep the scores the same as we approached the midway point. After two penalties for
the Sharks and one for the Wildcats, Gael Lubwele scored for the Wildcats to make the
Straight after conceding, the Sharks got goal number three, as Scott Henderson scored
after some nice puck work with an assist from Kell Beattie to make it 5-3. Stevie
Whitfield’s goal at the end of the second period gave the Wildcats their sixth goal of the
night, bringing the score to 6-3.
The Sharks started the period on the penalty kill and Wildcats got goal number seven
with Tomasz Malasinski making it 7-3. Back to 5 on 5 hockey, it was goal number four
after some fine work from Sharks captain Struan Tonnar to make it 7-4. As the third
period came to a close, Sharks pushed and pushed but it was the Wildcats who got goal
number eight, this time it was Sam Bullas to make it 8-4.
Sharks forward Callum Boyd said, “After beating Hull Seahawks, we entered this
weekend’s games versus Swindon on a high. The game on Saturday was disappointing
because we didn’t put up enough effort to be competitive, and we made careless errors
that cost us the game. We discussed and reviewed everything on Sunday in an effort to
fix the mistakes we had made on Saturday. We had won the first period and were off to a
great start. I thought the third period was better for us, and the players were working
really hard to get back into it, but it was too late. In the second period, we regressed to
Saturday’s antics, and penalties weren’t helping either”.
After last night’s game concluded in a win for the Wildcats as they won at the Dumfries
Ice Bowl 8-4 and claimed the two points, both teams were eager for points and started
strong with plenty of time on the puck and creating opportunities. Balint Pakozdi’s goal in
the first period gave the Wildcats the lead, Sam Godfrey with the assist. The Sharks had
some penalty kill time, but the Wildcats were unable to get another. When the game
went back to five on five, Nolan Gardiner scored with help from Scott Henderson, making
the score 1-1.
With help from Kell Beattie, Callum Boyd scored the team’s second goal of the match to
give the Sharks the lead in the Shark Tank. The Sharks were clicking at this point and
they scored their third, with Nolan Gardiner scoring on a powerplay and Olivier Arseneau
providing the assist.
The Wildcats called a timeout and were rewarded as they got their second of the game,
with Aaron Nell scoring from an assist by Tomasz Malasinski to end the period 3-2. An
early powerplay for the Wildcats allowed some pressure on Curtis Warburton’s net, which
resulted in an equalising goal with Aaron Nell to make it 3-3.
The Wildcats proceeded on the powerplay once again and were able to grab the lead with
a goal from Russell Cowley, who was assisted by Aaron Nell, to get a fourth goal.
Another quick goal, and the Wildcats had their fifth of the night, this time from Colby
Both teams created chances and looked for the next goal, but it was the Wildcats who
got goal number six as Russell Cowley got his second of the evening. Being on the
powerplay and having a 5 on 3 advantage allowed the Sharks to score their fourth goal
of the night. With an assist from Kell Beattie and John Dunbar, Craig Peacock scored the
As the Sharks had two players in the box in the last stages of the third period, Tomasz
Malasinski scored goal number seven for the Wildcats. In the closing moments of the
game, the Sharks were looking for a consolation goal on the powerplay and managed to
get goal number five with a goal for John Dunbar.
Sharks forward Scott Henderson said “This weekend was always going to be a tough one
after the tragedy that struck the hockey community last week, but I was glad to see
such a fitting tribute and respect given by everybody for Adam Johnson.
I feel like we are coming together as a team and starting to build some real chemistry,
but we are still making mistakes that we are being punished for. Saturday was a night to
forget for us all, which we improved on for Sunday but still fell short. We are dialled in as
a team moving forward and are determined to turn things around; we know we have
more to give.”
The Sharks will return to the Dumfries Ice Bowl this Sunday, November 12th at 4pm,
with doors opening at 2.30pm, so buy your tickets now as they face the Milton Keynes
Lightning. Tickets can be purchased online at http://sharksihc.com/tickets/.