Last night saw a hockey game at the West Manchester Municipal Pool.....other than that......absolutely nothing else happened in the world of Phoenix this past couple of weeks.....nope......nothing!
Ok, so stuff did happen, im not going to go into it on these pages suffice to say, the only place to hear anything close to 100% accurate will be the latest edition of the Phoenix Podcast. On which Neil Morris gave a frank account of all the goings on with Wayne Scholes and Red Hockey. Tambo will also be conducting an interview with WS this week, which will also appear on the podcast. Either added to next weeks show or put up as a stand along episode. There is also a fan forum in Telford Wednesday night which should also offer up more facts, though that will be entirely Telford Tigers focussed. I urge you all, Phoenix fans or not, please don't go on the forums and engage in the endless speculation that has already appeared. Listen to the interviews and make your own minds up!
Having said all that, the facts are, the Phoenix are in need of funds to help finish the season. Get your thinking caps on, the club will like to hear any good ideas for fund raising. Buy 50/50 tickets, buy shirt raffle tickets, buy merchandise, they are some of the obvious ways to help a club raise funds. Mike Newton (@oobze on twitter) famous for the 'Sons of Storm' kickstarter campaign and associated merchandise is starting up another Kickstarter campaign for the Phoenix under the #PTID moniker. Keep an eye on his twitter for updates, I (@theangrybudgie) will retweet anything I see to spread the word!
Housekeeping done? Check! Onto sunday nights hockey!
High flying Basingstoke Bison came to Deeside boasting a rather impressive roster. Recently bolstered by the arrival of Rene Jarolin and Jon Baston on injury cover. Despite the different league placing, no game on saturday meant the Phoenix were as fresh as they could be.
First Period: The game began with some great end to end hockey, both Fone and Baston were called into action early and both able to turn away the opening exchanges. Both sides saw their PP units out onto the ice but could not convert. With play being even through the opening minutes the Bison stunned the home crowd by opening up a 2 goal lead either side of the halfway point in the period. Aaron Connolly got the visitors off the mark at 8min 03sec then, former Phoenix man, Shaun Thompson doubled their lead at 12min 34sec. The Phoenix worked back into the game and began to shade play a little, with Michal Satek being denied by the excellent Baston.
Second Period: Like the first period, the opening minutes were a little hectic for the Phoenix. Some mad max style defence thwarted the Bison then, after those opening skirmishes the home side settled and came into the game. End to end action once more and, like the first, it was the Bison who would light the lamp first. Tomas Karpov slaloming up the ice and unleashing a pin point shot to Fone's top right corner. Unstoppable shot...no arguments here! The Bison 3rd timed at 33min 22sec. Like the first period, the Phoenix worked their way back into the game and, were finally rewarded less than a minute later. Michal Satek finding a gap in Baston's defences off a pass from Kovar timed at 34min 04sec. The Phoenix advance was halted when Trent Hope picked up a slashing penalty giving the Bison the advantage. After some superb play by the Bison Rene Jarolin scored what felt like the game winning goal, the Bison's 4th at 38min 34sec.
Third Period: No goals were scored in the third period but, the Phoenix put their all into finding a way back. Edging the play during the final 20mins the Phoenix began to set up camp in the Bison goal. Excellent chances fell to Kovar and James Neil but, as he had been doing all game and against the Phoenix when playing for Hull, Baston shut the door and closed out the game.
Verdict: After a tumultuous week the Phoenix hit the ice and put in a very good performance against an excellent Bison side. A 4-1 loss is still a loss but, given the Bison had hammered Telford 7-0 the night before, 4-1 is a good result. One thing that is sure, this team will give its all week in week out, no matter what is going on off the ice. Just wish the scoreboard would reflect that effort a bit more!