Elks strike late to roll past Thun­der

Runcorn & Widnes Weekly News - - In Business -

THE Widnes-based Earle Road Elks ice hockey team picked up their first-ever piece of sil­ver­ware after beat­ing the Traf­ford Thun­der in a dra­matic fi­nal at the in­au­gu­ral recre­ational ice hockey tour­na­ment held at Planet Ice Widnes over the week­end.

The Elks had fin­ished sec­ond in the B Com­pe­ti­tion qual­i­fy­ing group stage with two wins from their three games, with the only de­feat com­ing against the Thun­der who topped the group with three wins from three.

The fi­nal was in­cred­i­bly close with the Elks tak­ing the lead after just three IN the Widnes & District Darts League last Fri­day evening, the lat­ter stages of the Ja­son Bright President Pairs took place dur­ing the Mill Brow League RTB Fi­nals & Pre­sen­ta­tion Night at the Mill Brow SC.

In the Ja­son Bright’s President Pairs semi-fi­nals – spon­sored by Chris & Linda Bright – Paul Linger was back in ac­tion with Dave Pow­ell as his part­ner as they took on Karl Whit­field & Ste Whit­field.

They pro­ceeded to take the tie in two straight legs to go through into the fi­nal.

In the sec­ond semi-fi­nal, Sean Bell & Terry Roach went through by de­fault as their op­po­nents Jamie Doneghan & Brian Dut­ton failed to at­tend.

In the fi­nal, the Mill Brow pair­ing of Paul Linger & Dave Pow­ell took on Gold­mine duo Sean Bell & Terry Roach – and they found them­selves down as they lost the first leg.

Paul and Dave nipped in to take the next, how­ever, to level at one apiece. And a fur­ther win en­sured Paul & Dave’s vic­tory by two games to one. ● min­utes and then hav­ing to de­fend against waves of Thun­der at­tacks, pick­ing up sev­eral penal­ties and, at one point, hav­ing three play­ers in the penalty box at once.

The Al­trin­cham-based Thun­der team fi­nally man­aged to equalise, set­ting up a thrilling last few min­utes dur­ing which the re­sult could eas­ily have gone ei­ther way.

Then, with the prospect of a penalty shoot-out loom­ing, the Elks broke away and fired in the win­ning goal with just sec­onds left on the clock.

The tour­na­ment vic­tory rep­re­sents a huge suc­cess for the Widnes rink’s least ex­pe­ri­enced team which only be­gan play­ing com- pe­t­i­tive games ear­lier this year.

The other Widnes team in the B group, the Hal­ton Huskies, fin­ished third over­all with one win from their three games beat­ing bot­tom team Coven­try Cen­tu­ri­ons be­fore los­ing to both the Thun­der and Elks.

In a separate com­pe­ti­tion held at the same time, the Widnes-based River­side Raiders team had a dif­fi­cult time, play­ing with a re­duced ros­ter and los­ing all four of their group games.

The A Com­pe­ti­tion – which was for more ex­pe­ri­enced teams – was dom­i­nated by the Coven­try Snipers, a team com­prised mainly of Czech and Slo­vak play­ers who are now liv­ing in Eng­land, who won all four of their group games, con­ced­ing just one goal while scor­ing 28.

The Snipers beat sec­ond place Al­trin­cham Jets 6-0 in a slightly one-sided fi­nal and the Dee­side– based Flintshire Phan­toms saw off the Black­pool Seag­ulls 4-1 to se­cure third place. ● THE next com­pet­i­tive ice hockey game at Planet Ice Widnes is on Sun­day, July 29 when the River­side Raiders take on the Kingston City Knights in their fi­nal home group game of the Sum­mer Clas­sic Cup com­pe­ti­tion. Face-off is at 4.30pm and ad­mis­sion is free of charge.

Ja­son Bright President Pairs win­ners Paul Linger and Dave Pow­ell cel­e­brate their suc­cess on the Fi­nals & Pre­sen­ta­tion Night at Mill Brow SC.

The Earle Road Elks cel­e­brate their suc­cess in the ice hockey tour­na­ment held in Widnes.

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