Not a game to have arrived late to, with the first goal coming at 0.17; from the opening face-off, Deeside attacked down the right and when the puck worked it’s way to centre ice in the zone, a shot from Parry to Daniel Brittle’s left opened the scoring. The Dragons nearly doubled their lead within the first minute, but the Tigers were able to clear. However, the Dragons did not have to wait long for their second, with Supa doubling their lead at 1.56 when a shot from a tight angle on the right ended up in the net. The Tigers did start to come into the game after this, but Deeside defended well, closing down shots and getting bodies in the way. It seemed as though the only way the Tigers would be able to score would be through having a man advantage and this proved to be the case when a bench minor for too many men gave a powerplay that Karol Jets was able to score on at 11.51. The Tigers continued to press and put pressure on, but the Deeside defence continued to block shots. Fortunately for the Deeside players, no-one got in the way of a howitzer of a shot just inside the zone from Brad Betteridge that levelled the scores at 2-2 at 16.12.
Deeside opened the scoring in the second period as Supa got his second goal of the game at 21.14. Tigers continued to press, whilst Deeside looked to break with purpose. At 28.10, Simon Harrison was called for holding and after the whistle, Conor Gordon and Parry dropped the gloves for a good fight. Fights are often said to bring momentum to teams and this was certainly the case for the Tigers as Ben Simister broke up ice from the face-off and levelled the scores at 28.17. Deeside took the lead again 43 seconds later when a face-off to Daniel Brittle’s left was worked across to the opposite face-off circle and Kankaanranta fired home. Whilst Matt Viney was sitting a two minute minor for cross-checking, Adam Brittle broke up ice and levelled the scores at 4-4 with Tigers second short-handed goal of the evening at 30.36.
The third period started with Fellows taking a hooking call and Karol Jets finishing from close range at 43.24 for his second powerplay goal of the evening to put the Tigers into the lead for the first time. However, two quick goals saw Deeside reclaim the lead, with Kankaanranta’s second goal coming at 44.26 and Supa’s hat-trick goal coming at 46.01. When former Telford-favourite Scott McKenzie scored Deeside’s seventh at 51.59, it looked to be game over, especially when Tigers could not make a powerplay count. Adam Brittle scored his second of the night with a shot into the roof of the net at 56.59 to give the Tigers a chance of snatching an equaliser late on, but penalty trouble prevented this from happening as Simister got called for slashing and Adam Brittle for hooking (Daniel Brittle also picked up a 10 minute misconduct) and Kankaanranta scored his hat-trick goal at 59.49 from close range on a 5-on-3 powerplay to ensure the points for the Dragons.
Tigers NIHL points: Karol Jets (2+1), Adam Brittle (2+0), Ben Simister (1+1), Brad Betteridge (1+0), Joe Aston (0+2), Simon Harrison (0+1), Matt Viney (0+1)
Deeside Dragons points: Kankaanranta (3+2), Supa (3+0), Parry (1+0), McKenzie (1+3), Wainwright (0+1), Wigglesworth (0+1), Jones (0+1), Auston (0+1), Compton (0+1).
Tigers NIHL PIMs: 32
Deeside Dragons PIMs: 16
Tigers NIHL MOM: Joe Aston
Deeside Dragons MOM: Armstrong