Crikey it seems like ages since the last Phoenix game! With the Sheffield game being cancelled the week before Christmas, and no games until the new year it was a good layoff for the Phoenix. Thankfully coming into the Slough game the Phoenix welcomed back the 4 players lost to Great Britain and Steve Fone was back between the pipes. Sadly Courtenay was missing due to urgent family commitments in North America, but other than that, at full strength.
More snow and ice greeted both sets of fans and another cold night in the Ice Dome would see the Phoenix try and record their first victory against the Scimitars this season.
First Period: With that fact in mind the Phoenix made the best possible start they could have made. With just 37 seconds on the clock Tony Hand broke down the wing and slid the puck across to Walker who slotted home in the open net. It got better for the Phoenix support when after 1min 42sec Ian Bowie deflected a Greg Wood shot to double the lead. The game continued at pace with both sides creating many chances and, certainly in the case of the Phoenix, some early defensive wobbles. The Jets would not allow the Phoenix to have it all their own way and before the 5min mark halved the deficit. Blaz Emersic would get his first, of many, goals of the night at 4min 05sec. There were no further goals in the period, but worryingly for the Phoenix, some questionable reffing! To have a chance in the game the Phoenix would have to stay out the box!
Second Period: Crikey it all went off in the second period! In a 6 goal thriller Slough would take the game by the scruff of the neck! It would be the Phoenix to score first, with Tony Hand netting after just 1min 42sec of the re-start. That man Blaz Emersic would score again after 28min 12sec to reduce the deficit to one goal. The Jets pressure would payoff when at 33min 51sec Emersic popped up and grabbed his hatrick. Mr Hand would restore the Phoenix lead about a minute later and continue the back and forth wing of the game. The Jets then delivered a sucker punch to the Phoenix and scored two goals in 27sec in the final minutes of the period. Dan Davies first at 38min 11sec then Emersic again at 38min 38sec. The Phoenix went off the ice stunned and quite thankful for the break.
Third Period: With the scores at 5-4 to Slough the game was not out of the Phoenix' reach and some disciplined play would help. Sadly it seemed the Phoenix were not able to do so, and Slough extended their lead after 42min through Dan Davies second of the game. The Phoenix continued to press, and live dangerously at the back. Those efforts were rewarded with just about two minutes to go. On the powerplay Adam Walker would score the Phoenix 5th at 57min 56sec. Then, less than a minute later, the Dome erupted when Rob Lachowicz tied the game, sending us into overtime!
Overtime: 4 on 4 hockey, a situation I always think suits the Phoenix. However in a story of the game, the Phoenix struggled. Even going on the powerplay didnt seem to help. With 3min and 29sec of the overtime period gone, the Jets hero Emersic would step up and riffle the puck over Steve Fone's shoulder to grab the extra point.
Verdict: In truth the Phoenix were poor, we ran out of many attacking ideas, and the defence seemed at sea. The Phoenix did well to get a point from the game, and sadly didn't deserve to win! So the wait for the first win against the Jets continues!
Attendance: Despite the conditions outside a decent attendance in the Dome! Im going to guess at about 850.
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Phoenix 7 Slough 6 - MEN Article