Invicta Dynamos fell short on Saturday with a 7-4 defeat to rivals Chelmsford Chieftains with a late collapse in the third period.
Dynamos were missing Arran Strawson, Kieron Jones, Gregor McAllen and Mark Williams whilst Chelmsford were without Jaden Boolkah, Liam Chong, James Dimond and Frankie Sabine. Grandy-Smith was in net for the hosts. Chelmsford had Ben Clements between the pipes.
Chelmsford opened the game with a goal 15 seconds in – Grant Bartlett sent a one timer towards the net from the back of the left circle and Grandy-Smith was unable to save.
Dynamos were quick to retaliate though as Tomas Banovsky skated through the middle of the ice with no competition and fired low to send the puck sliding beyond Clements and tie the score at 1-1 at 03:40. Soon after Tom Davis tried to give the Dynamos the lead but his drive from between the circles struck the post and bounced to safety.
At the other end of the ice the Mos defence let Cameron Bartlett sneak through on the breakaway but he too suffered the fate of striking the goal frame. Moments later Chelmsford regained the lead as Ross Brears redirected Bartlett’s shot from the left boards sending the puck beyond Grandy-Smith for 2-1 at 08:48.
Once again the Dynamos managed to even the score as Tomas Banovsky fed Elliot Farrell close left and he passed to Dell who was waiting at the back post and duly equalised at 11:17. They then finally took the lead as Dell added another – Banovsky firing through a crowd of players and Dell redirecting on the edge of the crease whilst the pick was mid-air. For 3-2 at 16:56.
Just as it looked as though the Mos might escape the first frame with a lead, Chelmsford restored parity as G. Bartlett managed to deke past Henry Aiken and get a clear and then eventually guide in a rebound at 19:43. End of the first period and the Dynamos tied 3-3.
Second period underway as Harrison Lillis attempted a blue line slapshot but Clements saved with ease. Down the other end the Dynamos defence left Cameron Bartlett wide open in front of Grandy-Smith and the forward found his brother at the back post for the 4-3 lead at 31:39.
Player Coach Anthony Leone tried to respond for the Mos but his close range shot was over Clements. The second period then concluded with no further goas despite non-stop end to end play.
In the final period the Chieftains furthered their lead as Adam Jakopin slammed beyond Grandy-Smith for 5-3 at 45:50. The Mos were then falling out of sight as another defensive error saw Darren Brown allowed far too much time and space and he lifted the puck over the netminder for the three goal cushion at 54:58.
The hosts would muster a reply – Banovsky claiming his second of the night with a well placed finish at the back post to cut the deficit to 6-4 at 56:14. Any optimistic hopes of a comeback were swiftly dashed however – James Ayling skating down the middle of the ice between the Dynamos defencemen and tucking under Grandy-Smith for 7-4 at 58:12.
End of game and the visitors managed to outscore the Dynamos 7-4 after a tight first two periods. Dynamos were largely a match for their Essex opponents but ultimately made a number of defensive errors that led to their downfall.
Invicta Points: O. Dell 2+2, E. Farrell 0+3, T. Banovsky 2+2
Chelmsford Points: C. Bartlett 1+2, G. Bartlett 2+2, D. Brown 1+0, R. Brears 1+2, A. Jakopin 1+0, M. Turner 0+3, J. Ayling 1+1
Invicta: Z. Grandy-Smith – 82.50% (40 shots / 7 goals)
Chelmsford: B. Clements – 91.67% (48 shots / 4 goals)
Man of the Match:
Invicta: Owen Dell
Chelmsford: Courtney Grant
Written by Hannah Lawrence.