3rd of March 2019
GAME REPORT: SOUTHERN CUP FINAL 1ST LEG - Bison v's PeterboroughFinal Score: Trane Basingstoke Bison 1 Peterborough Phantoms 2
By: Nigel Simmonds
Lino’s: Cook & Sitch-Cunningham
MoM Bison: Klejna
MoM Wildcats: Marr
Bison Stats: Tait 1+0, King 0+1, Klejna 0+1.
Nets: Mettam 21/2 (90.48%)
Phantoms Stats: McEwan 1+0, Padelek 1+0, Billing 0+1.
Nets: Marr 27/1 (96.3%)
PiMs: Bison 6 Phantoms 6
Well, I never thought I'd be reporting on this game come last September. Our beloved Bison in the Southern Cup Final and Ashley Tait hoping to lift a trophy in his inaugural season as a Player/Coach. Well, believe it, because it's happened. A Thursday evening in Basingstoke was where our opponents, the Phantoms of Peterborough had to travel to for the 1st Leg.
Mr Matthews was the ref & he dropped the puck for this game. The Bison were still missing injured import Richard Bordowski and also Chris Cooke, who was away with the GB University team (as Captain) in Russia.
Bison had an early scoring chance, when a turnover by the Phantoms allowed George Norcliffe to get a shot off, Marr saved, Paul Petts followed up, but Marr saved again.
Petr Stepanek had Phantoms first chance, his shot being saved by Mettam, but he hurriedly looked behind him to see if the puck had escaped past him. The whistle blew and Alex set about trying to find the puck. A few seconds later, it dropped from under his jersey!
Bison were playing a lot better than recent games and were looking dangerous going forward. Norcliffe had another really good chance, but again Marr saved well and followed up that shot, by somehow denying Adam Harding from point blank.
At 7.37, Bison took the first penalty, when Michal Klejna was given a Slashing call. Bison would see off the penalty and return to full strength. The period was being played at a good pace and the Bison were growing into the game with every passing minute. They would get another penalty though. At 16.57, Tommy Ralph was given a Hooking call, but again, it would be successfully killed. That was it for the first period & at the break, the scoreline read 0-0.
The 2nd Period started and for the first few minutes, there was nothing much to bother either nettie. Then a break up ice by Phantoms youngster Taylor Romeo, brought two big saves from Alex Mettam.
A minute later and danger man Ales Padelek received a pass from Glenn Billing and he fired a shot past Mettam, to give Phantoms the lead. Goal timed at 25.21.
Padelek would be involved again a few minutes later, when Elliott Dewey was alleged to bring him down with a Tripping call at 28.59. But it was a harsh call because Padelek was already on his way down. Bison did have a great shorthanded chance, when Michal Klejna pounced on a loose puck and drove into the Phantoms zone. He picked his spot in the far corner, shot the puck, but Marr would save with his pads.
Phantoms had been getting away with lots of minor calls, but finally at 32.57, Mr Matthews decided to call a penalty on them.... Hallelujah!!
Tom Norton picking up the Interference call. Then like buses, two came along...... Adam Jones picking up on a poor turnover and he drove into the zone, with Weldon on his tail. The Phantoms player slashed Jones just as he was about to shoot, so up the arm went of Matthews and he signalled a Penalty Shot in Bison's favour.
Jones would take the shot and from the way he skated in, you could tell he'd made it difficult for himself to probably score. Alas, Marr closed him down and the shot was poor and saved easily. Bison still had 56secs of Powerplay time, but Phantoms killed that off well and returned to full strength.
So, at the second break, the Phantoms he a slender 1-0 lead, going into the third period.
The 3rd period started and within a few minutes, Phantoms had doubled their lead. A big mix up in the Bison zone, gave away a turnover and the puck was picked up by Corey McEwan and he wheeled out in front and wristed a shot past Mettam. An unassisted Goal timed at 44.36.
This silenced the crowd for a bit, but fear not, it wouldn't last. Just over 2 mins later and Bison were back in the game, when Ashley Tait picked up the puck and fired it on goal. Now it hit a Phantoms d-man and looped up high and beat everyone and landed in the net behind Marr. What a slice of good fortune, but I feel we had deserved that goal for all the hard effort earlier on the match. Jay King & Michal Klejna getting assists on the goal, at 46.38.
Phantoms would get called again at 47.04, when Scott Robson would get a Hooking call. Unfortunately, Bison couldn't make the man advantage count. But just as they'd returned to full strength, Phantoms got called again. This time a Too Many Men bench minor call (49.41)
Phantoms again dug deep and they managed to see off the penalty.
The period was dwindling down and we entered the final 2mins of the game. A frantic last two minutes saw chances go either way, Phantoms had the biggest chance though. Susters away up ice after blocking a shot down and he tried to squeeze the puck in the near side, but Mettam was having none of it and came up big again on the night with another important save.
The final buzzer sounded and at "half time" in the Final, it was Phantoms that take a slender 1 goal lead back to Peterborough for the 2nd Leg in two weeks’ time.
A much better performance from the guys tonight and it's definitely all to play for in the 2nd Leg.