Slovakian overseas player Michal Klejna returns for a second season in the Herd uniform as exclusively revealed earlier today in the Basingstoke Gazette.

Klejna completes the Trane sponsored Basingstoke Bison overseas roster for the 2019 / 20 season and will once again ice alongside Richard Bordowski as our two overseas players.

31 year old, 6’1” tall Michal...
Basingstoke Bison - EPL Champions
30th of January 2019

GAME REPORT: Peterborough Phantoms v's Bison Sunday 27th January 2019

Final Score: Dalrod Peterborough Phantoms 3 Trane Basingstoke Bison 5

By Nigel Simmonds

Ref: Pickett
Lino’s: Campbell & Edwards

MoM Phantoms: Billing
MoM Bison: Tait

Phantoms Stats: Susters 1+1, Padelek 1+0, Stepanek 1+0, McEwan 0+2, White 0+1.

Nets: Marr 12/4 (66.67%)
Bainborough 14/1 (92.86%)

Bison Stats: Tait 3+0, Cowley 1+1, Sampford 1+0, Bordowski 0+3, Harding 0+1, Morris 0+1.

Nets: Mettam 38/3 (92.11%)

PiMs: Phantoms 8 Bison 16

After Saturdays OT win over Streatham, the Bison made the trip to Peterborough to face the Phantoms, in a game which would be seen as a 4 pointer. Phantoms lost in Swindon on Saturday evening and they really needed to win, so they would at least get something out of the weekend. Bison however, are playing some great hockey & are achieving results, that's making the other teams in the league sit up & take notice. Could they defeat the Phantoms in their own barn and complete another 4pt weekend?

Both teams started off at a quick pace and Phantoms looked like they meant business. Unfortunately, they couldn’t take advantage of their early pressure. They did however, take the first penalty of the evening, with Taylor Romeo, picking up a Holding penalty at 5.18. Phantoms would return to full strength as the penalty expired. Soon after Bison got called for their first penalty, when Jay King was assessed a holding penalty at 7.36.

The Phantoms powerplay came out and set about scoring with the man advantage. They moved the puck around well and Tom Norton had a shot from the point that went just wide. Ales Padelek picked up the puck and fed it back out to the point. Another shot came in, Alex Mettam saved, but the puck was bobbling around the crease. Mettam was out of position and Padelek fired the puck into which looked like an open goal, but out of nowhere, Tommy Ralph threw himself on the line and stopped the puck crossing the line, then Padelek took another couple of swipes at the puck and somehow it made it over the line. Personally, I thought the goal was off, but Pickett decided otherwise and signalled a goal. Powerplay goal timed at 8.06, unassisted.

At 8.55, Phantoms James White was called for Tripping, but again Phantoms killed the penalty successfully. Bison continued to try and test Marr, but most of the opportunities went off target.

At 17.53, Bison finally got on the board when Richard Bordowski set up Ashley Tait. He drove in from the wing and fired the puck, Marr saved but gave up a huge rebound and Ash was on hand to fire the puck past Marr to level the scoreline.

Entering the final minute of the period and the Bison got a Bench Minor penalty for Too Many Men, although they fiercely contested the call, but once again Picketts mind couldn't be changed. Penalty timed at 19.51. Discussions carried on after the period ended.

Scoreline at end of 1st, was Phantoms 1 Bison 1.

Phantoms started the 2nd period with 1.51 still on the powerplay. But it would be Bison that would take the lead, when Bordowski set up Ash Tait again and he fired the puck past, (well, almost through) Marr for a short-handed goal timed at 21.02.

Bison killed the penalty, but soon after Adam Jones, would get called for Tripping at 23.33.

Phantoms set about trying to tie the scoreline, but once again it would be Bison that would score short-handed, with Ashley Tait completing his hat-trick; but all the credit must all go to Liam Morris. He chased down a pretty lost cause, but somehow managed to hassle/hurry the Phantoms d-man into a mistake and amazingly he came away with the puck, with which he skated out in front of goal to get his shot off, Marr saved and again juicy rebound fell at Tait’s feet and he slotted the puck under Marr's pads. The Bison Bench and travelling fans went absolutely crazy. We couldn't believe what was going on in front of our eyes.

Phantoms looked shell-shocked, but still came back on the attack and forced Alex Mettam into a mistake. The puck was fired forward and with Phantoms players bearing down on him, Mettam skated out and played the puck. Unfortunately, he got too much on his clearance and it sailed over the plexi, so he was given a Delay of Game penalty at 26.08. But do you think it bothered the Bison......., hell no!

Another Phantoms attack broke down and Adam Harding skated out with the puck and his pass released Russ Cowley into the Phantom’s zone. He looked like he was going to let rip with a slapshot, but he faked, took an extra stride and coolly slotted the puck between Marr's pads. This was simply unbelievable, what was happening?

I honestly thought Slava Koulikov would call a Time Out, but it never came. Goal was timed at 26.33.

In all the commotion, we had forgot that Phantoms were still on the PP and that would better for them, when Liam Morris was given a Slashing call at 27.45. But again, Pickett should've called both players, but chose only to penalise the Bison.

Bison set about killing the penalties. Mettam would be tested, but they would kill off the first penalty and then, at a break in play, Marr was replaced by Ryan Bainborough at 28.43. Bison returned to full strength soon after.

Phantoms Tom Norton picked up a Charging call at 30.24 and then Bison's Tommy Ralph took one for team, with a Tripping call, that pretty much saved a goal scoring opportunity for Phantoms. Tommy's penalty timed at 32.19. Both teams’ PK's would see off the penalties.

Soon after, Michal Klejna received an accidental High-Stick to the face, which drew blood. But Pickett wasn't interested, although Michal had skated back out on the ice to confront the ref, he just waved him away. Absolutely ridiculous officiating.

At 36.54, Danny Ingoldsby was called for Tripping. Could Phantoms get a goal back before the end of the period. They pressed hard and threw everything on the Bison net. Martin Susters finally beat Mettam, when his shot flew through a crowd and possibly took a slight deflection. Timed at 38.45, with Corey McEwan assisting the goal.

The 2nd Period ended with the scoreline reading Phantoms 2 Bison 4.

The 3rd period started and it was going to be a very important period, as regard to the standings in the table. Both teams cancelled each other out for the first half of the period. The time was running down and Bison still held a two-goal lead.

At 53.47, Glen Billing was awarded a Cross-Check penalty, then at 54.12, Tommy Ralph picked up a Hooking call. Both teams were at 4 skaters aside. Could the Bison hold out a bit longer? Phantoms would then make it a one goal game. Petr Stepanek collecting a pass from McEwan and he picked his spot and rifled the puck past Mettam, to make the last 5 minutes a very nervous time for the Bison & their fans. Phantoms returned to full strength and set about trying to tie the game. They laid siege on the Bison net, but Alex Mettam was playing inspired between the pipes.

Bison killed off the penalty and just had over 3 minutes to see off for a monumental victory. With Phantoms pushing forward for the goal they needed, gaps were appearing in their defence and Bison exploited it.

Bordowski and Cowley combined and then Russ put the puck on Alex Sampford’s stick and he roofed the puck over the on-rushing Phantoms netminder. Oh, the relief that came out from Bison players and fans alike was all there to see.

With just over 2 minutes left, Bainborough was pulled for the extra attacker. But Phantoms just couldn't find a way past Mettam. The final seconds ran down & the buzzer sounded.

What a brilliant result for the guys. They were superb and thoroughly deserved the victory. It has to be one of the hardest places to go, to get a result.

A 4pt weekend for the Bison and an unusual, zero-point weekend for Phantoms. Bison moved to second in the table, a point behind leaders Swindon and 2 pts clear of Peterborough. Things are good in Basingstoke right now. They are definitely proving the doubters wrong. Long may it continue......