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Nov 5, 2017

Four point weekend clinched in Wales

After a big win over Invicta Dynamos in the Cup the previous evening, the RedHawks headed down the M4 to concentrate on league matters with a game against Cardiff Fire at Ice Arena Wales.

The Fire have struggled this season but sat only one place below Streatham in the league as the game faced off to the sound of drums from travelling supporters. (Photo by Michael Baker)

The rousing pre game rendition of the Welsh National Anthem failed to inspire the Fire as Streatham took control early on. Three minutes in Jordan Gregory slipped a pass across to Adam Carr on the right wing and he cut behind the defence before sliding the puck past Jordan Lawday.

The early goal perhaps caused the Streatham forward’s eyes to light up in expectation of a point night, and while the visitors spent a lot of time camped in the Cardiff end, they were getting caught constantly with odd man rushes.

In the final minute of the first period Farn was penalised for an innocuous looking hook and the Fire equalised on the powerplay with a well worked effort finished by Michael Stratford.

The second period started exactly the same as the first but Streatham could not seem to find the finish to accompany their excellent build up play. When they did get shots on target they found Lawday in inspired form, whilst at the other end, young Nate Gregory was keeping out the odd counter attack.

Streatham looked susceptible on the break despite dominating and the Fire got just reward for their persistence and work rate as Sam Bryant diverted a Sam Smith pass into the net off his skate unintentionally.

At 2-1 down with 20 minutes to go Streatham had it all to do and equalised almost straight from the restart thanks to a bullet of a shot from Michael Farn on the point. Cardiff didn’t take it lying down and went ahead again almost straight away as Jordan Powell fired the puck towards goal from the angle and the puck bounced into the roof of the net.

Streatham’s frustration began to show and after a call missed on a Cardiff player was swiftly followed by a minor to Brendan Baird, RedHawks forward Jamie Hayes upset the referee with something he said and she ejected him from the game. This left Streatham with a lengthy 5 on 3 penalty to kill and then a further 5 on 4.

The RedHawks penalty killing unit did a fantastic job keeping out the Fire who by now could see their first win of the season on the horizon. The hosts playing smart hockey on the powerplay but unable to finish.

They were punished with four minutes remaining as Captain Carr came to the rescue and fired home at the back post on a rare powerplay after an inch perfect pass from Aidan Doughty.

The wind had clearly been sucked from Cardiff’s sails and Lawday made a stunning save from a Watt point blank clapper in the slot, but could then do nothing as Alex Sampford was left all alone in front of net and buried his chance from a clever Siagris pass.

Cardiff had the last two minutes on a powerplay and pulled Lawday for the extra skater, but Watt picked up a rebound after Gregory had denied Callum Buglass, and then fired into the empty net from his own zone for 5-3.

Scorers: Carr 2+2, Farn 1+0, Watt 1+0, Sampford 1+0, Webb 0+3, Doughty 0+1, Gregory 0+1, Baird 0+1  

Man of the match: Michael Farn