Match report by Yvonne Slater
Saturday evening saw the visit to The Hive of the Peterborough Phantoms as opposition for the Bees. They went into the game at full strength whilst the visiting Phantoms were missing Marc Levers, Dan Lane & Callum Medcalf. Netminders Alex Mettam, for the Bees, and Janis Auzins for the Phantoms, started the match in the respective goals. Referee Stephen Matthews took charge of the match with Charlie West & Justin Lalonde on the lines.
The home side Bees started the game well with David Gaborcik finding Scott Spearing for an early chance which Janis Auzins in the Phantoms net did well to cover. The Bees early pressure continued as from the resulting face off then Phantoms clear the zone only for Olegs Lascenko to pick up the puck and find Josh Smith well who fired his shot narrowly wide. The Phantoms Ben Russell tested Alex Mettam with a shot from the blue line but the Bees netminder was equal to it. End to end play followed with the Bees controlling possession but unfortunately unable to find a way past Auzins. A Lukas Smital drop pass to Alex Barker gave the forward a clear chance but again Auzins kept the puck out. More Bees pressure saw Matt Foord blast a shot wide from the blue line before an Olegs Lascenko chance in close again whistled narrowly wide. It was Lascenko again who picked up a loose puck and went one on one with Janis Auzins, the netminder came out to challenge for the puck but picked up a two minute tripping penalty instead. The Bees headed onto the power play with just over eight minutes gone but the visiting Phantoms soaked up the pressure well to see off the advantage. The opening goal of the evening came with a little under twelve minutes gone with the puck rebounding in off Alex Mettam’s pads from a Scott Robson shot (assisted by Wehebe Darge & Owen Griffiths). The Phantoms kept up the pressure and Alex Mettam had to be alert to make a blocker save from James Ferrara. As the opening period drew to a close Bees forward Josh Smith picked up a holding minor 18.48 and the Bees ended the period a man light.
The second period started with the Phantoms on the remainder of their power play but the Bees saw it off well. Having killed off the penalty the Bees found themselves a man down once more as Scott Spearing picked up a slashing minor with twenty-one minutes on the board. This time the visiting Phantoms took full advantage, netting their second goal at 22.10 scored by Darius Pliskauskas (assisted Wehebe Darge & Will Weldon) Two minutes later the Bees found themselves on a power play of their own as Ales Padelek took a tripping penalty. Alex Barker came close with the man advantage forcing Janis Auzins into a leg pad save. With the penalty being killed the Phantoms applied more pressure and this resulted in a bizarre goal against the Bees for the second week running. Owen Griffiths fires the puck in on Alex Mettam and the netminder comes out of net to play the rebound but fires it out but straight into Owen Griffith’s chest with the rebounding puck ending up in the back of the net for Phantoms third unassisted goal at the half way point of the game. Three minutes later the Phantoms added a fourth goal, this time from Martins Susters (assisted Tom Norton and Ales Padelek). Another late penalty saw Scott Spearing sitting an elbows penalty at 38.40. Again the Bees would need to see off a penalty late on.
The third period begins with the Bees on the front foot and looking for a way back into the game. Efforts from the Bees kept Janis Auzins busy before the sides exchanged penalties. The Bees bench pick up a too many men penalty, five minutes into the period, and within a minute the Phantoms Ales Padelek picks up a goalie interference penalty, both penalties expire and the sides return to five on five action. At 51.07 the Phantoms James Ferrara collected a tripping penalty and this is where the game changed direction. The Bees netted their first goal of the evening on the resulting powerplay, scored by Carl Thompson (assisted Luka Basic & David Gaborick). The visiting Peterborough side immediately took a time out and shortly after swapped over their netminders with Adam Long replacing Janis Auzin. Less than two minutes later the Bees scored their second goal – a nice wrap around goal from Bees player/coach Lukas Smital (assisted Alex Barker & Carl Thompson). Visibly lifted by the two quick goals the Bees continued to apply pressure and were rewarded with a third goal at 56.43 as a scramble in front of the Phantoms net saw Rio Grinnell-Parke force the puck over the line (assisted by Martin Pavlicek and Scott Spearing). The visitors were now completely on the back foot and the Bees continued to pile forward and were again rewarded as Lukas Smital picked up his second goal, the Bees fourth, at 57.35 (assisted by Alex Barker & Carl Thompson). Only one goal behind the Bees call a time out at 58.59 and opt for the extra skater, removing Alex Mettam, and continue to put pressure on the Phantoms net but the buzzer beat the Bees and the Phantoms held on for the two points.
The man of the match awards went to Bees player/coach Lukas Smital for the home side and to Martins Susters for the visiting Phantoms.
Period scores: 0-1; 0-3; 4-1
Bees scorers: L.Smital 2+0; Thompson 1+2; Grinell-Parke 1+0; Barker 0+2; Pavlicek, Spearing, Basic & Gaborcik 0+1
Phantoms scorers: Griffiths & Padelek 1+1; Susters, Robson & Pliskauskas 1+0; Darge 0+2; Norton, Russell, Weldon, Stepanek & Archer 0+1
Bees PIMS: 12 (Spearing 6; Smith, L.Smital & Bench 2)
Phantoms PIMS: 30 (Weldon 22; Padelek 4; Auzins & J.Ferrara 2)
Shots on Bees (Mettam): 19 (5, 11, 3)
Shots on Phantoms (Auzins & Long): 23 (7, 9, 7) & 4 (0, 0, 4)