The Invicta Dynamos lost their unbeaten record in Chelmsford on Sunday evening despite working home netminder Ben Clements hard in a 2-0 league defeat at the Riverside.
Dynamos coach Kevin Parrish had to mix the lines around with captain Callum Fowler the latest victim of injury as he joined Steve Osman and Haydn Wootton on the wounded list. Harrison Lillis was also unavailable but the Mos were able to welcome back Anthony Baskerville.
An early Chelmsford penalty on Alexander Staples for hooking gave Elliott Dewey a chance on the right-hand side which Ben Clements saved before, not long afterwards, Olegs Lescenko switched play on the break whilst still on the shorthand and produced an early block from Damien King. Clements would again be busy as he denied Conor Redmond and thwarted Ashley Jackson, with Saturdays hat-trick hero having been fed by Rehak following great puck tackling skills from Condren in D to break-up a Chelmsford attack. The Dynamos were made to pay for their missed chances at 11:21 – Cameron Bartlett zipping a pass across the goalmouth of Damien King for Danny Hammond to tap home. Lukas Zatopek almost doubled the lead seconds later but his big shot was seen by King through a crowd of players. On 17:22 poor Invicta marking then gave Grant Bartlett the easiest of opportunities which he capitalised on, roofing a shot past the helpless King to double the lead to 2-0 ahead of the break.
Seconds into the second period Dynamos forward Bailey Wootton made the faintest of touches on a Jackson pass and hit the Chelmsford goal frame with Clements beaten. The Dynamos continued to put the pressure on with Nicky Lewis almost nipping in on 22:00, but Clements won the race for the loose puck and smothered it to freeze. The hardworking Condren then lurked behind the Chelmsford goal and found Bailey Wootton in space – only for Clements to pull off a wonder save. The pressure continued, Rehak with a clever reverse pass put Nicky Lewis in the clear but, with only Clements to beat, the Welshman lost the battle. Ashley Jackson was having the better of his markers with his speed and when Strawson and Rehak played him in front of Zatopek the Olympian hit a powerful shot at Clements, who tipped the puck around the post. A big opportunity for the Dynamos fell into their hands on 34 minutes, with Chelmsford serving two penalties – Sean Barry for tripping and then shortly afterwards Matt Turner for interference. However, despite plenty of hard skating and puck switching, the Dynamos could not breakdown the resolute Chelmsford defence on the powerplay. The last opportunity of the second period fell to Ashley Jackson who nipped ahead of Lukas Zatopek, only for the burly import to hook the speedy forward before he could shoot past Clements.
A big third period for the Dynamos failed to produce any further goals, with the best chances falling to Adam Rehak and Josh Condren. Damien King at the other end had to deal with 18 shots within the period, successfully keeping out Chelmsford debutant Liam Chong and also a last gasp leg block to deny Danny Hammond.
So a 2-0 defeat for the Dynamos who will now look to put things right next weekend, travelling to Streatham in the cup on Saturday 1st October and then MK Thunder at home on the Sunday with the aim of securing two crucial league points. Ashley Jackson picked-up the man of the match award for the Dynamos, completing a double man of the match for him over the weekend. Home netminder Ben Clements unsurprisingly was awarded the man of the match for the Chieftains, having gained his shutout by saving 40 shots.
Written by Lee Allen