Last night the EIHA shared some great news for our plans to return to competitive play, when they announced that they had successfully secured from the government £1.2m for the three NIHL divisions.

This has been down to the determined efforts of the EIHA Board, and in particular board member Andrew Miller who has worked tirelessly as our NIHL National liaison...
10th of November 2019

GAME REPORT: Bison V's Telford Tigers Saturday 9th November 2019

Final score: Basingstoke Bison 5-4 Telford Tigers (after Overtime)

Saturday 9th November 2019

Bison MOM: Morris
Tigers MOM: McKenzie

Bison stats: Norcliffe 0+2, Sampford 2+0, Tait 2+0, Harding 0+1, Harewood 0+1, Jones 0+1, Kelly 0+1, Klejna 0+1, Malinsky 1+0, Morris 0+1, Sutton 0+1.

Netminder: Dan Weller-Evans 31/4 (87.10%)

Tigers stats: McKenzie 2+2, Florian 2+1, Whistle 0+2, McKinney 0+1, Oliver 0+1, Silverthorn 0+1.

Netminder: Bradley Day 30/5 (83.33%)

PIM: Bison 6 – Tigers 10.
SOG: Bison 30 – Tigers 31

Refs: Brooks and Jarvie
Lino’s: Andersson and MacPhee

Following on from their first four-point weekend of the season, the Trane sponsored Basingstoke Bison welcomed high-flying Telford Tigers to town for the second time this season, having won 7-5 on the opening night. The Herd were boosted by the return of Oscar Evans, Michal Klejna and Hallam Wilson, with young prospect Sam Talbot also available for the clash. The Tigers were without multiple key players including Rick Plant and Jonathan Weaver but the influential Jason Silverthorn returned from injury.

Monday 11th November marks 100 years since the end of the First World War and prior to the opening face-off, the Last Post was played and everyone in attendance stood in silence as a sign of respect ahead of Armistice Day.

Dan Weller-Evans made his third consecutive start in net for the Bison, with Bradley Day beginning in goal for the Tigers and it wasn’t long before Day was pulling the puck from out of the net behind him. Marek Malinsky (Harding, Harewood) continued to make a positive impression on the Bison faithful as he opened the scoring at just 00:24 after a neat pass from Harding left him with time and space in front of Day. Less than two minutes later and the home side’s dream start continued as Alex Sampford (Norcliffe, Kelly) put the Bison 2-0 ahead at 2:01, squeezing the puck home after a saved shot led to a scramble in front of Day’s net.

The Tigers desperately looked for a way back into the game as the first period evolved, however, the home side had other ideas and at 18:47 Alex Sampford (Norcliffe, Morris) scored his second goal of the game, after neat work down low allowed Norcliffe to set up Sampford for a 3-0 lead. Unfortunately for the Herd, Ollie Stone was called for Tripping at 19:05 and with just 5 seconds of the period remaining, Dominik Florian (Whistle, McKenzie) converted on the powerplay to leave the Bison 3-1 ahead going into the first break.

In a complete reversal of the opening stanza, it would be the Tigers who came out firing in the second period and they reduced the Herd’s lead to a single goal at 22:46, as Scott McKenzie (Oliver, Florian) somehow deflected the puck past Weller-Evans for their second goal of the game. Momentum was firmly with the opposition now and at 25:45 import forward Dominik Florian (McKenzie) dispatched the puck neatly after a fast move up the ice, scoring his second of the game to level the scores at 3-3.

The game had become a scrappy affair and both sets of fans were not shy in voicing their displeasure at the questionable refereeing on display at times. With Bison forward Hallam Wilson and Ross Kennedy of the opposition already sat in the penalty box, Tigers’ forward Brandon Whistle was called for Unsportsmanlike Conduct at 35:50 and this handed the Bison a 4-on-3 powerplay opportunity. Thankfully the home side needed a mere 8 seconds to retake the lead as player/coach Ashley Tait (Jones, Klejna) stepped in from the blue line and rifled the puck straight past Brad Day in net at 35:58, putting the Bison 4-3 ahead as the second period ended.

Early on in the third period and Telford once again found themselves in penalty trouble, as Jack Watkins and Brandon Whistle were called for Hooking and Elbowing respectively, with both penalties timed at 45:54. Despite having a full 2 minutes of powerplay opportunity with the 5-on-3 man advantage, the Tigers defended admirably and killed off the penalties to the frustration of the Herd.

A series of seemingly clear penalties were then ignored by the officials, leaving the Bison faithful feeling further irritated as tempers also threatened to boil over down on the ice. The Bison managed to successfully negate a George Norcliffe penalty for Elbowing at 51:47 but disaster would strike at 54:52 when Scott McKenzie (Whistle, Silverthorn) scored his second goal of the game after a mess in front of Weller-Evans allowed the Scot to hit the net and tie the game at 4-4.

The final minutes would pass without drama and for the second successive home game, the Bison were heading into a 5 minute Overtime period of 3-on-3 play. Both sides had chances early on as Malinsky went close for the Bison and Kennedy saw his effort stopped smartly by Weller-Evans.

The home side were looking to repeat last Saturday’s overtime heroics and at 62:14 none other than Ashley Tait (Sutton) stepped up to secure the extra point, sending the Bison crowd into delirium and the Bison team up into 3rd place in the league. A juicy rebound somehow found its way back out to Tait, who skated forward and sent a bullet into the top corner of the net to complete a nerve-wracking 5-4 victory, as the rest of the team poured onto the ice and the home fans celebrated, knowing they had certainly seen value for money tonight.

Sunday sees the Bison travel down the M3 to Bracknell, as the Herd once again take on local rivals the Bees with Nigel Simmonds bringing you his away game report as ever!