ICE HOCKEY: Wildcats being hampered by inconsistency

Aku Pekkarinen Swindon Wildcats (2332510)

Aku Pekkarinen Swindon Wildcats (2332510)

First published in Sport
Last updated

IT WAS a mixed weekend for the inconsistent Swindon Wildcats as they demolished Telford Tigers at home on Saturday before losing to Guildford in Surrey 24 hours later, writes George Royle.

The Cats controlled the game from the first to the final minute on Saturday against a decent Telford outfit, putting in arguably their best performance of the campaign to date.

Aaron Nell bagged two goals in as many minutes midway through the first period, but Telford kept themselves within striking distance through a Nathan Salem strike.

The Wildcats started to pull away in the second period, scoring two early goals through their Finnish duo Aku Pekkarinen and Henri Sandvik, which prompted a goalie change for the visitors.

Jaroslav Kruzik then scored for the Tigers, but a late second-period goal by Ryan Watt put Swindon in prime position heading into the final stanza.

Swindon scored two unanswered goals in the final frame to cap a terrific performance and give them a very impressive 7-2 win.

On Sunday night, the tough task of visiting Guildford Flames was made more difficult because key import Jonas Hoog had to sit out the game with an injury picked up the previous night.

They also got off to the worst start possible, falling behind with just a minute on the clock.

Sandvik levelled the scores 10 minutes later, netting his second of the weekend and 22nd of the season, and that's how the first period ended.

It went downhill from then on in for the visitors, as Guildford scored three goals in little over five minutes to swing the momentum fully in their favour.

A goalless final period gave Guildford a thoroughly deserved 4-1 win.

Inconsistency is preventing Swindon from moving up the table and gaining a higher play-off seeding.

However, the way the team played for the full 60 minutes on Saturday shows that they are capable of beating the best teams in the league by a large margin.

Whoever they face in the play-off quarter finals may not be able to stop them getting to finals weekend in Coventry.

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