Sheffield Spartans were left wondering how they didn’t take anything from their game against Solway at Ice Sheffield on Sunday but credit to Sharks for how they came from behind twice to take the points.
Solway seemed to be slow out of the blocks in the first period which Spartans took advantage of with a lovely individual goal from Ollie Barron on 3.40 with Tom Parkinson increasing their lead to 2-0 on 9.14, assisted Alex Harding & James Maughan. Spartans were in control & were handling Sharks advances quite comfortably until a dreadful defensive mistake opened up a chance for Struan Toner who made no mistake to take his chance well on 14.55. Both teams had chances to score, Stuart Brittle probably having the best chance but enable to put his chance away against some strong defending from Sharks whilst Brandon Stones in Spartans goal was in fine form to keep the Sharks at bay!
At times the second period was a bit scrappy but Sharks were starting to get the upper hand with Brandon Stones in superb form in thwarting some good Solway opportunities but also dealing with the physical approach with little protection from the referee who in fairness was trying to let the game flow but it was such one attack that lead to Solway’s equalising goal with the puck trickling through Brandon’s legs in all the melee & definitely going over the line despite some protests from the crowd. Robert Chalmers forcing the puck home on 27.09 assisted Craig Thurston & Steven Moore. It was Spartans who responded the better though & after some good pressure Ollie Barron restored their lead making it 3-2 with a great shot on 35.58, assisted Stuart Brittle & Scott Morris which was the score at the end of the period as both teams basically cancelled each other out.
Both teams were clearly up for the final period but it settled down with neither really stamping their authority on the game until another basic error allowed Solway in again with the puck being turned over far too easily when it should have been cleared, with time & space to do so, which allowed Mark Gallagher & Struan Tonnar to find Iain Bowie to score, what was for Sharks, a very good & well created goal from a nothing situation. With the score at 3-3 the game was there for the taking, a game overall that had been quite even with both teams having good spells. Spartans were on the powerplay & looking to assert themselves but another poor defensive mistake allowed Juraj Senko to pick out Iain Bowie to score a short-handed goal on 54.12. From that point Solway always looked in control, they defended well to snuff out any threat from a hard working Spartans team who couldn’t break down a well organised team to see out the victory, winning 4-3.
Sharks continue their fine form to keep tabs on Billingham Stars at the top of the table whilst Spartans have right to be disappointed but once again were made to pay for the basic errors they made. They have a chance to put the record straight with a return fixture up in Dumfries on Saturday followed by a home game next Sunday, 10th November, facing off at 4.30pm.
Final Score: Spartans 3 Solway Sharks 4