A Callum Best goal was not enough to prevent the Invicta Dynamos falling to a 5-1 home defeat at the hands of the Basingstoke Bison on Sunday night despite a battling display.
The Dynamos were without Ryan Giles as well as Adam Long after his departure from the club early last week. Bison were missing the suspended Liam Morris and youngster Samuel Brooks.
Bison made their presence known with a quick goal 36 seconds into the game – Michal Klejna flicked the puck into the top right corner of the net past Connor Morris. Dynamos tried to tie the game as Louis Colvin took a shot at Alex Mettam but the effort went wide. The puck was later overturned in the Bison zone which allowed Richard Bordowski to skate up the wing and take a shot, but Morris covered it with ease. Anthony Leone then came steaming in and knocked Chris Cooke into the boards which sent the Bison defenceman to the ice.
Not even five minutes into the period, the Bison increased their lead to 2-0 as Bordowski tipped the puck over Morris’ pads (4:17). Straight off the faceoff, George Norcliffe slapped a shot towards Morris from the blue line but the netminder grabbed it out the air with his glove. Ex-Dynamo Tommy Ralph then tried his luck, but Morris pushed it away with his pads.
Colvin tried to get past Mettam with a snapshot but the netminder batted it away with his stick. Colvin retrieved the puck and tried again but this time Mettam covered the puck. Dynamos bullied the Bison to turn over the puck as Brandon Miles shoved Ralph off the puck.
Bison player, Russel Cowley took a shot, but it was sent towards the boards. Cowley skated behind Morris and tripped the netminder in the process. The whistle was blown, Morris laid on the ice for several seconds before getting back to his feet. No calls were made. Ryan Morgan took the puck up the boards but was not able to take a shot as Bison players put him under pressure.
Lewis English received the puck and took a shot which was deflected. As the Dynamo forward turned around, he received a buttend in the face by a Bison defenceman. The referee ignored the incident as English skated off the ice holding his face. With under five minutes remaining of the period, the Dynamos continued to pressure the Bison with hits and slashes. Joe Allen took Adam Jones into the boards and crushed the defenceman. Bison pinned the Dynamos in their end. Jay King called for the puck and wound up for a slapshot only to miss the puck and send himself down to one knee. Ondrej Zosiak stole the puck and skated down the wing taking out Hallam Wilson in the process. But was not able to get a shot on net. Period ended 2-0 to the Basingstoke Bison.
The second period began and the Dynamos were not holding back when it came to hits and physicality. Allen pushed Alex Sampford off the puck and sent the Bison forward to the ice. Sampford got to his feet but was thrown back onto the ice as Arran Strawson knocked him into the boards. Klejna controlled the puck and tried to deke past the Dynamos defence but stumbled. The Bison player however managed to flick the puck up and over Morris’ pads. Bison led 3-0 at 23:19.
Allen and Zosiak teamed up as they both took out Bordowski one after the other. Harrison Lillis then nearly collided with Paul Petts on the boards. Lillis handed out more and more hits on the Bison players as they tried to increase their lead once again. Allen and Bordowski shoved at each other again which led to words exchanged after the whistle. The Bison player did not seem interested in a fight as both Allen and Miles confronted him. Miles followed and slashed at Bordowski as the play continued. The two exchanged more words at the whistle, Miles shoved him but Bordowski cowered away from the exchange with his head bowed and skated to the bench. Off the faceoff player coach Ashley Tait fired a slapshot from the blue line and the puck hit the back of the net. 4-0 to the Bison, timed at 28:59.
After the play continued, Morris obviously irritated saw that his net was off and shoved the net further which resulted in a whistle. The referee had a few words with the netminder, but play resumed.
Colvin and Jake Stedman teamed up and collided with Joshua Kelly who was caught between the pair. Bison were called for too many men and the Dynamos received a powerplay. Strawson fired a slapshot at Mettam and Callum Best took the opportunity to net the rebound. Dynamos made it 1-4 at 32:35.
Dynamos took the rush of the goal and continued their physical play. Colvin slammed Sam Smith into the boards followed by a mid-ice hit from Anthony Leone on Tait. Lillis got in on the action with a hit on Klejna. With just under five minutes left in the period, Miles and Kelly chased the puck into the corner. Miles bear hugged Kelly and took him to the ice which led to a two minute roughing penalty. Powerplay for the Bison. Nothing was made of the powerplay and the Dynamos killed the penalty. The period ended 4-1 to the Bison.
The third period opened with a shot from Klejna who thought he had scored and quickly stopped celebrating when he realised Morris had covered the puck. Dynamos found their feet as they continued to bully the Bison team, as Owen Dell pinned Ralph to the boards. Morgan knocked down Elliot Dewey with a massive hit next to the Bison net. Zosiak had his chance as he rocketed a slapshot from the blue line but Mettam sent it flying upwards.
The play continued back and forth with equal possession of the puck for both teams. As the Dynamos fought in the Bison zone, English and Cooke pushed and shoved violently in front of the net. With various slashes which increased in intensity and elbows being thrown into each other’s faces and chests. The officials ignored the encounter and it was only broken up as the puck was sent out of the Bison zone.
Bison made it 5-1 as Ralph sent a puck hurtling towards the right post and it flung off and crossed the line. Goal timed at 50:41.
Back down in the Bison zone, English set up Morgan whose shot was saved by Mettam. Dynamos desperate for another goal, Miles took the puck from one end of the ice to the other, knocking down anyone in his way to the ice. Final two minutes of the game and Lillis shoved Petts into the boards and the Bison player flew head first down onto the ice. The puck was passed to Dell in the crease, he and Colvin tried to ram the puck into the net but Mettam denied all attempts. In a last attempt at a goal Dell dumped the puck into the Bison end as he was tripped and fell to the ice. Stedman jumped over his fallen team-mate and tried to get a shot on net. But the shot went wide. Miles crushed Cooke into the boards just before the last buzzer.
The game ended 5-1 to the Basingstoke Bison. The Dynamos tried to use their physicality and although earning them possession they could not find the net and were left defeated.
Written by Hannah Lawrence.