12th of March 2018
Full weekend for the Bison sees them crowned League ChampionsThe weekend started early for the Sherfield School Basingstoke Bison as they finally got the Autumn Cup Final underway a week later than scheduled due to the previous Friday’s weather conditions.
Basingstoke Bison 1 Swindon Wildcats 3
Stephen Matthews took charge of the game and starting goaltender duties went to Dean Skinns and Renny Marr. It was early advantage to the Wildcats when Stephen Whitfield’s shot benefitted from an unlucky deflection off Vanya Antonov. The Herd were level later in the period Vanya Antonov seized on a turn over by Aaron Nell and went high shorthanded for 1-1 at 16.53.
Jan Kostal got the second of the night for the visitors at 32.11 which turned out to be the only goal of the middle period. It was Aaron Nell who added the security goal at 48.10 which gave the Wildcats a 2 goal advantage to take with them to the second leg leaving all for the Bison to play for in Swindon next Friday.
Bison: Antonov 1+0. Net: Skinns (60.00) 19/3
Swindon: Nell 1+1; Birbraer 0+2; Whitfield, Kostal 1+0; Taylor, Johnson, Liddiard 0+1. Net: Marr (60.00) 30/1
Period Scores: 1-1/0-1/0-1
Shots On Goal: 30-19
Penalty Minutes: 4-6
Referee: S Matthews. Linesmen: J Lalonde & A Cook
The Sherfield School entered the last weekend of the regular season knowing that two wins and a better goal difference than the Phantoms would see them lift the league title.
Basingstoke Bison 10 Invicta Dynamos 1
The Invicta Dynamos were the opponents for the final home game of the 17/18 regular season with the Bison also aware there’s an opportunity that the same team could be next week’s play-off quarter final opponents.
Dr Dan Boardman took charge of the game with Mr Justin Lalonde and Mr Andrew Strain on the lines. Dean Skinns and Damien King starting in goal for their respective teams.
Bison set about the task of building their goal difference early as chance after chance was created in the early stages of the game. Josh Smith fed Aaron Connolly only to see the feed broken up by Tom Ralph. Ryan Sutton looked to provide Hallam Wilson but the latter couldn’t connect cleanly with the feed and as Roman Malinik made his way up the middle drawing a save from Damien King the whistle blew for the first penalty of the game as Ashley Jackson was called for hooking at 4.02.
A good powerplay didn’t bear result and Invicta returned to full strength but 28 seconds later Vanya Antonov was sitting a high sticking penalty at 6.30 to give the visitors a chance on the powerplay. Mason Webster stuffed one wide of the post at the Bison executed a good penalty kill to see out the Antonov penalty.
Damien King dropped a shot from Dan Davies but as the Bison sniffed for the rebound the Dynamos scrambled to clear and the 10 minute mark came around with the game still scoreless.
A good chance laid off for Paul Petts in behind the Dynamos defence was followed by a 3 on 2 for the visitors as they caught Bison on the change. Bison quickly recomposed and Aaron Connolly, Roman Malinik and Dan Davies combined to draw a save from Damien King.
At 14.07 Bison finally broke the deadlock when Aaron Connolly muscled his way to the net and waited for the opportunity to score low and left in the net for the first strike of the game.
Chances continued at either end but at 17.35 Bison doubled their advantage. A good cycle round the zone and a desperate attempt at the blue line to hold the puck in resulted in Vanya Antonov getting the puck to the net and Dan Davies deflecting it past the Dynamos goaltender.
As the first period buzzer sounded the Bison were deserving of their two goal lead after a clinical showing saw them outshoot their opponents 28-6.
Bison found their scoring flowing early in the second period. Aaron Connolly netted his second of the game just 24 seconds in when he beat Damien King up high. Dan Davies bagged his second 1.06 later as he used the space he had to manoeuvre and shoot 5 hole for 4-0. With the Bison celebrating their fourth goal Dynamos took their time-out.
Roman Malinik, who’d been busy all night so far, raced to the net but his shot took a deflection of King and ended up high out of play.
Damien King had to wave goodbye to his water bottle when Bison scored their fifth as Dan Davies laid off to Ryan Sutton who shot hard and high and the spinning water bottle met it’s end at the same time as the goal light illuminated for a fifth time at 23.16.
Roman Malinik provided Paul Petts at the top of the crease but the latter lost the puck in his feet however it didn’t stop the scoring as Tomas Karpov out skated the Dynamos before feeding to the net where Dan Davies tipped in to complete his hat-trick at 25.29.
Chances kept coming as Dan Scott smashed a puck to the net but Dan Davies deflection went agonisingly wide and a Dynamos break up of a Bison play saw the puck fall for Stuart Mogg who’s shot ended in the netting above the glass behind the goal drawing a whistle.
Dynamos ended the shut out hope at 30.42 when Steven Osman got one low past Dean Skinns but Bison kept on going as Roman Malinik cut into the zone, rounding the defence and setting up Vanya Antonov for Bison’s seventh goal at 31.46.
A Dynamos powerplay resulted from a Roman Malinik high sticking call at 33.08 but Bison spent more time in the attacking zone than defensive zone and Malinik duly returned.
Soon after his return Roman Malinik went on an end to end solo run, shooting then picking up his own rebound which he took behind the net to feed out but the feed ended up missing and clearing the zone. Stuart Mogg followed up with a shot for Vanya Antonov to deflect but he ended up putting it wide.
With 1.20 to play in the middle period Bison added their eighth of the night as a Kurt Reynolds speculative shot squeezed through and into the target for 8-1.
Mason Webster took a tripping call at with 59 seconds left in the middle period and ended that period sat in the penalty box as Bison celebrated a 6-1 middle frame.
Invicta changed netminders with John Dibble replacing Damien King for the third period and early doors was twice save but the metal work when Vanya Antonov and Dan Davies both hit the post. Mason Webster returned and the Dynamos were at full strength until Brandon Webster took a charging penalty at 43.01.
Tomas Karpov drew a save which didn’t look too confident from John Dibble and the younger Webster returned to the ice at 45.01.
Karpov became the third person to hit the metal work in the period as he skated in at speed and the metallic ring filled the arena. Ondrej Zosiak went alone with Dean Skinns but the Bison shotstopper track the skater and puck all the way and held on for the save.
Bison fans were celebrating once again as Aaron Connolly got the puck in the net for the third time but this one was instantly called as no goal as the puck had been held at the net with a high stick before being fed to the Captain.
The Bison Captain was then called for interference at 51.00 but that didn’t stop Tomas Karpov going on a solo run which was ended by some good Dynamos defence from Tom Ralph but moments later Vanya Antonov shamelessly stole the puck from the same defenceman and forced a glove save from John Dibble.
Another Dyanmos powerplay followed as Roman Malinik was called for boarding in behind his own net just 10 seconds after Aaron Connolly returned. This time shorthanded chances were created by Dan Scott and Aaron Connolly but as Roman Malinik returned there was no damage done to the scoring.
At 56.55, and with an eye on the Phantoms vs Redhawks score, Bison netted their ninth of the night when Dan Davies found Tomas Karpov who fired past Dibble for 9-1. Having just scored Tomas Karpov came closed again with 37.1 seconds showing on the clock when John Dibble was forced to cover a wrap around chance but at 59.58 Karpov couldn’t be denied as he netted his second. After a face-off in the zone Bison cycled the puck and fed Tomas Karpov in front who put it home for the double figure score.
Basingstoke: Davies 3+3; Karpov 2+2; Sutton 1+2; Antonov 1+2; Connolly 2+0; Reynolds 1+1; Smith 0+2; Wilson, Dewey, Mogg, Baird, Malinik 0+1. Net: Skinns (60.00) 18/1
Invicta: Osman 1+0; M Webster 0+1. Net: King (40.00) 41/8 & Dibble (20.00) 22/2
Period Scores: 2-0/6-1/2-0
Shots On Goal: 63-18
Penalty Minutes: 10-6
Referee: D Boardman. Linesmen: J Lalonde & A Strain
With the league title on the line the Sherfield School spent Sunday afternoon making the journey to Ice Arena Wales to face the Cardiff Fire in the final league game of the season knowing a win by any margin would secure the title.
Cardiff Fire 1 Basingstoke Bison 8
The first 10 minutes passed by scoreless but Basingstoke Bison took the lead on 10.29 thanks to a powerplay goal from Aaron Connolly. Cardiff’s Tamas Elias levelled the game though shorthanded at 16.27 and the first period ended tied.
Stuart Mogg scored the game winning goal at 25.32 and got the scoring flowing as Bison turned on the charm knowing each goal made the league title safer. Roman Malinik made it 3 at 29.16 and Tomas Karpov chipped in with a pair of goals at 32.10 and 36.19 ensuring the second period ended 1-5.
Bison weren’t done yet and continued to score in the third period, started by Vanya Antonov at 41.31 and following by a second from Aaron Connolly at 46.40. Josh Smith scored the game’s final goal at 58.22 when he converted a powerplay for 1-8 and securing the Bison the 17/18 League title.
Cardiff: Elias 1+0; Price 0+1. Net: Lawday (60.00) 81/8
Basingstoke: Malinik 1+3; Karpov 2+1; Antonov 1+2; Connolly 2+0; Smith 1+1; Reynolds, Sutton, Davies 0+2; Mogg 1+0. Net: Skinns (60.00) 13/1
Period Scores: 1-1/0-4/0-3
Shots On Goal: 13-81
Penalty Minutes: 12-6
Referee: Brooks. Linesmen: Jarvie & Lambly
League wining Head Coach Doug Sheppard said after the weekend; “I don't think anybody would have predicted this in late September but when you’ve got a talented group full of character anything is possible. I couldn't be more proud of the guys and the way we stuck together and got job done on the last weekend of the season.”
He added; “Happy belated Mothers’ Day to all the Mum's out there. I know there would have been a lot of proud Mums in the Bison family after our win. Yesterday was very emotional for me as the first championship I ever won was won on Mothers’ Day back in Canada.”
“I want to thank our fans who've been amazing all season. Saturday was an amazing effort from the fans and it was terrific to see so many fans travel to Cardiff to celebrate the title with us and sticking around after to congratulate us all.”
He finished by saying; “I hope everyone involved with the Bison enjoys this moment for a short while and then we get back to business Friday in Swindon ahead of launching our Play-offs.”