North Ayr­shire go wild against the St­ingrays

Dumfries & Galloway Standard - - SPORTS -

Sol­way St­ingrays, the Scot­tish Na­tional Ice Hockey League (SNL) team from the Sol­way Sharks, faced their sec­ond game of the sea­son on Satur­day, wel­com­ing North Ayr­shire Wild to the Ice Bowl in their first home fix­ture.

In front of a healthy and ex­pec­tant crowd of sup­port­ers from both teams, the St­ingrays were look­ing to im­prove on their 12-2 de­feat in their first game, and they took to the ice in de­ter­mined fet­tle.

In a hard-fought, phys­i­cal and penalty-lit­tered game, Sol­way were on the back foot for the whole of the first pe­riod and found them­selves 4-0 down at the end of the first pe­riod, Grant Scott in nets hav­ing faced a tor­rent of 24 shots.

The sec­ond saw the St­ingrays un­der pres­sure from the force­ful and dy­namic Wild of­fence and the mid­dle stanza saw them con­cede an­other three goals, de­spite some good at­tack­ing plays of their own.

Go­ing into the fi­nal pe­riod 7-0 down, the St­ingrays dug deep, skated hard and were re­warded when Euan Edgar net­ted on the pow­er­play with five min­utes of the game left, as­sisted by An­drew Creighton.

Wild stepped up the pace and rat­tled an­other two past Dou­glas Carmichael who had taken over in nets for the last pe­riod and found him­self un­der a bar­rage of 26 shots to make the fi­nal score St­ingrays 1 Wild 9. Ar­ran Shank­land was St­ingrays man of the match. Coach Craig Jack­son, said: “The game to­day couldn’t have got off to a worse start, los­ing a goal within the first 30 sec­onds.

“From then we re­ally strug­gled to get any form of a grip on the game. Our big­gest down­fall to­day was discipline, tak­ing penal­ties is in­evitable when you’re play­ing in phys­i­cal game but when tak­ing these penal­ties we need to en­sure that we are tight at the back and not giv­ing away chances.

“The third pe­riod saw us show more grit, de­ter­mi­na­tion and team spirit so hope­fully we can grow on that go­ing into next week’s dou­ble header.

“This cur­rent round of cup games is be­ing used by the St­ingrays to get the team work­ing through the ba­sics as many of the guys we have iced tonight have been out of SNL hockey for many years.

“We are hope­ful of im­prov­ing on our re­sults as we head into the league sea­son. We have ar­eas that we need to work on, but I do feel that as the guys get more train­ing ice and game time in the com­ing weeks we will see a vast im­prove­ment in their per­for­mances and team re­sults.”

St­ingrays are back in ac­tion at Dum­fries Ice Bowl on Sun­day against Pais­ley Pi­rates at 5.30pm.

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