1st of March 2020
GAME REPORT: Bison V's Sheffield Steeldogs Saturday 29th February 2020Final score: Basingstoke Bison 6-3 Sheffield Steeldogs
Saturday 29th February 2020
Bison MOM: Sam Talbot – Steeldogs MOM: Vladimir Luka
Bison stats: Jones 0+3, Klejna 2+1, Norris 1+2, Bordowski 1+1, Tait 0+2, Harding 1+0, Morris 0+1, Sampford 1+0, Sutton 0+1, Talbot 0+1
Netminder: Alex Mettam 26/3 (88.46%)
Steeldogs stats: Smith 0+2, Brammer 1+0, Cochrane 0+1, Luka 1+0, Morgan 0+1, Spurr 1+0
Netminder: Dmitri Zimozdra 34/6 (82.35%)
PIM: Bison 16 – 32 Steeldogs. SOG: Bison 34 –26 Steeldogs.
Refs: Belfitt and Stephenson – Lino’s: MacPhee and Sitch-Cunningham
The Trane sponsored Basingstoke Bison rounded off the month of February with a rare Leap Year fixture as they welcomed the Sheffield Steeldogs to town for the second and final time this season in league action. The Herd were buoyed by the return of d-man Tommy Ralph, where as the opposition were missing a couple of bodies including Alex Graham who was playing for his parent club, the Sheffield Steelers.
The home side began brightly and had a couple of nice chances early on but it would be the visitors who would open the scoring against the run of play, as James Spurr (Smith) put the Steeldogs 0-1 ahead at 3:23. A few minutes later the Bison would be forced to kill off a Late Hit call against Bayley Harewood and shortly after they would level the game at 1-1, as Sean Norris (Klejna, Tait) tucked home a rebound at 9:34 after an initial save by Zimozdra. The away side fought back and had long spells of possession with several good chances to re-establish a lead but could not find a way past Alex Mettam in net, which made a Tripping penalty against Ben Morgan at 19:11 all the more frustrating. The Herd’s powerplay unit went to work and struck gold at 19:57 as Michal Klejna (Jones, Norris) took a slightly deflected shot from Jones and buried the puck past the Dogs netminder, giving the Bison a 2-1 as the first period ended.
Early in the middle frame and Tom Ralph was called for Tripping at 22:05, sending the visitors to the powerplay and whilst they couldn’t capitalise on the man advantage, shortly after they levelled the scores at 2-2 as Jack Brammer (Cochrane, Morgan) scored at 25:11. A series of three consecutive penalties against the Steeldogs halted any momentum they had gained from their equaliser. Although the home side were unable to convert any of their powerplay opportunities, they looked extremely threatening and the pressure told as they retook the lead at 32:46 as Adam Harding (Norris, Jones) shot from behind the goal and banked the puck in off the netminder, to the delight of his team mates and the Bison faithful in the crowd. The remainder of the period was littered with penalties but no further goals saw the Herd remain 3-2 ahead after 40 minutes.
Both sides knew that the next goal could prove decisive as to who would emerge victorious and thankfully for the home side they extended their lead to 4-2 at 42:20 as import forward Richard Bordowski (Sutton, Talbot) finished off a spell of sustained pressure by taking a pass in close and sending a lovely wrist shot past Zimozdra. In contrast to the middle period, it was the turn of the Bison to fall into penalty trouble, the most notable of which saw Alex Sampford called for Tripping and Adam Jones penalised for Hooking at the same time (48:20), handing the Steeldogs a full two minute 5-on-3 powerplay. Somehow, the home side held firm and some heroic defending saw them keep their 2 goal lead intact but less than a minute later the visitors brought themselves to within a single goal, as Vladimir Luka (Smith) scored at 51:11.
The game entered a nervy final five minutes and when Lewis Bell took a Late Hit penalty at 55:48, this gave the Bison an ideal chance to put some daylight between themselves and their opponents. To the relief of the Bison fans, Alex Sampford (Bordowski, Morris) duly obliged as he took a Morris shot which had hit the post and slotted it home for a 5-3 lead at 56:25. The visitors still had time to receive a couple more penalties which gave the Herd a 5-on-3 opportunity to extend their lead again and Michal Klejna (Jones, Tait) finished off a quick passing move by firing through Zimozdra’s 5-hole to put the Bison 6-3 ahead at 59:37.
The final few seconds counted down and the Bison celebrated their 3rd consecutive win and another valuable two points in the final push for the playoff spots.
Sunday 1st March sees the Bison head to Leeds for their first visit to the new Planet Ice rink, where Nigel Simmonds shall soon report back from.