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Match report: Bracknell Bees 11 - 1 Cardiff Fire

posted 25 Sep 2017, 22:27 by john slater
Report by Ashley Willitt

After last week’s disappointment and with a rare Saturday night off, the Bees were keen to get back to winning ways on Sunday as they welcomed the Cardiff Fire to the Hive.

The Fire travelled down to Bracknell short benched, missing amongst others, the experience of former Bracknell and GB international and Cardiff captain Nicky Chinn. The Fire were also without a regular 1st choice goalie, giving the start to 17 year old Lewis Davies. The Bees chose to give Alex Mettam the night off too, allowing Danny Milton the start in the net.

The game started well for the Bees with James Galazzi, George Norcliffe and then also Steve Osman putting Davies to work within the first few minutes - the Bees not relenting on the Cardiff goal. A succession of penalties gave Bracknell an early 5 on 3 but was negated when Josh Tetlow was sent to the box for high sticks. As the shots fired in, it was only a matter of time before the deadlock was broken. On 11 minutes it was the top line for Bracknell and the deadly combination of Shaun Thompson and Frankie Bakrlik with the latter scoring from an impossible angle behind the goal, banking the puck in off the Cardiff netminder. Less than a minute later it was Bracknell's other 'import' player, defenceman Jan Bendik shooting from the blueline past the helpless Davies. Although he was left with little to do, when called into action the Bees goalie Milton didn't disappoint, especially after a giveaway on the Bees blueline led to a point blank shot in which he made a huge save.

The second period saw the Bees pick up where they left off and the Fire also continued their tactic of trying to physically intimidate their opponents. The experience of the Bees meant they weren't going to be swayed by the visitor’s tactics and after 7 minutes of the period Bees forward Thompson made it 3-0 on the powerplay. Minutes later the Bees made it 4-0 with Ben Ealey-Newman with his first goal for the Bees this season, fresh after icing with the Hornets in their win against the Oxford Stars the night before. A beautiful goal where a great pass by Bakrlik left him all alone against Davies. He deked left, then right and left again before slotting the puck home. Once again this period saw very little action for Danny Milton, facing only 3 shots, but when called into action he was alert and ready. The Bees 5th and 6th goal came within a matter of minutes and both scored by talismanic forward Bakrlik. Both scored almost directly from face-off wins and both blasted high over the glove side of the helpless Davies in the Fire net. A break in goals came in the form of a toe-to-toe tilt between seasoned tough guy Brad Watchhorn and towering Bees defenceman Josh Tetlow. Both men got some good hits in on each other, but 'Tiger' Tetlow came out on top, much to the delight of the home fans. The fight, however didn't stem the flow of Bees pressure and just seconds after the restart Jared Lane got his first of the night with a well worked goal to make it 7-0.

The final period gave the Bees the chance to see out the game with some comfort as only 35 seconds in Jared Lane got his second of the night with a tipped shot that seemed to bumble past Davies and roll over the line. A constant threat all night had been Callum Best, but it wasn't until the 45th minute before he got his reward for endless hard work all game. A very well worked goal with great passing around the net by defensive pairing Tom Avery and Harvey Stead led to a beautiful finish by Best. Callum then got his second with a breakaway from a great pass from player/coach Scott Spearing, skating in between two defencemen he powered through and took the score to double figures. With the Fire never giving up and always looking to attack, they once again left a hole at the back where George Norcliffe took advantage, only to be taken down and a penalty shot awarded. Lewis Davies in the fire net made himself big and took away any chance for Norcliffe to score. The icing on the cake came in the form of an eleventh goal when Steve Osman got his first goal for the Bees following up on a Norcliffe shot, burying the rebound. In the latter stages the Bees still pushed forward and almost made it 12 when Captain Matt Foord struck the crossbar. The Fire would not go down without a fight and in the latter minutes, on a powerplay, got their goal when former Swindon Wildcats player Callum Buglass took a pass from Jackson Price and buried his chance past Milton.

An exceptional result and one that will give the Bees players and fans confidence going in to next week’s games against the Bison and MK Thunder.  Man of the Match awards went to defenceman Josh Tetlow for the Bees and to Sam Bryant for the visiting Fire. 

Match stats
Period scores:
2-0; 5-0; 4-1
Bees Scorers: Bakrlik 3+3; Best 2+2; Lane 2+1; Thompson 1+5; Bendik, B.Ealey-Newman & Osman 1+0; H.Stead 0+3; Galazzi, Foord, Avery, Norcliffe, Spearing & Martin 0+1
Fire scorers: Buglass 1+0; Price 0+1
Bees PIMS: 24 (Bendik 10; Tetlow 6; W.Stead 4; H.Stead & Bakrlik 2)
Fire PIMS: 20 (Watchorn 8; Sheppard 4; Murdoch, Elias, Buglass & Price 2)
Shots on Bees (Milton): 15 (7, 3, 5)
Shots on Fire (Davies): 66 (23, 19, 24)