Hexagon Telford Tigers travelled to Slough to take on Bees who are currently in tenth place in the league.
Tigers had added three new players to the roster in the week with Gareth O’Flaherty and Tom Carlon making a return to the club and import forward Rory Herrman joining from Cardiff Devils. The team were still without Jonathan Weaver and Ricky Plant and had lost Nick Oliver and Jason Silverthorn for the rest of the season.
With the much needed addition to the roster Tigers started the game on the front foot and opened the scoring in the seventh minute. Fin Howells scoring with a first time shot off a Scott McKenzie face off win to put Telford ahead.
But the lead lasted only a couple of minutes as Brendan Walkom equalised for Bees after good work between Walkom and Dominik Gabaj left Walkom an open net to shoot into.
Bees then took the lead three minutes from the end of the period with Walkom scoring his second goal of the game.
Telford equalised midway through the game with a goal from McKenzie after being set up by good passing from Vladimir Luka and Howells. McKenzie waited out Matt Smital in the Bees’ goal and shot low past him to draw the sides level.
Tigers were then on the wrong end of a very strange decision by the officials when netminder Brad Day was giving a holding penalty in the final minutes of the second period. The penalty seemed incredulous as Bee’s Josh Martin had been called for goaltender interference and had landed on top of Day but Day was also given a penalty much to the bemusement of the Tigers’ bench. Walkom completed his hat trick on the subsequent power play and Tigers fell behind for a second time.
Tigers pushed hard for the equaliser in the third period but Smital in the Bees goal was in good form. Bees managed to keep the Tigers’ forwards out and with two minutes of the game left Telford called a timeout and shortly after pulled Brad Day from goal to add an extra attacker.
The tactic worked when Herrman scored his first Tigers goal with a fantastic finish. Herrman skated down the wing, cut inside a Bees’ defender and despite almost losing his balance, he managed to hit a superb shot past Smital to level the scores.
With the teams level the game would go to overtime. Halfway through the overtime period, Tigers thought they had won the game but the goal was disallowed. Howells’ shot beat Smital but the whistle had already blown as the net was off it’s moorings.
With no further goals the game went to a penalty shootout. Luka and Herrman scored for Telford and Walkom and Gabaj scored for Bees to send the shootout in to sudden death. Gabaj’s next shot was brilliantly saved by Day allowing Luka the chance to win the game and the Tigers’ forward made no mistake with a cool finish past Smital to give Telford a much needed victory.
Final Score: Bees 3 Hexagon Telford Tigers 4 (after Penalty Shootout).
Scorers: Fin Howells, Scott McKenzie and Rory Herrman.
Man of the match: Scott McKenzie.
After the game Head Coach Tom Watkins, commented, “It was a tough game and it certainly felt great to get the win. I’m sure we’ll play better than we did tonight in the future but we showed good character to battle back and get the win Bees put us under some pressure in the third period and we struggled with our transition game all night. What a time for Rory to come up with such a huge goal to take us to overtime.
“We have lots to improve upon but also it was great to see us come through a game where we know we can play better but were also able to come out with the two points which is a big boost for us.”