Two goals from Jake Stedman and efforts from Filip Sedivy, Ryan Morgan and Elliot Farrell saw the Invicta Dynamos begin their 2019/20 campaign with a 5-4 home win against the Romford Junior Raiders on Sunday evening.
The Dynamos were without Dale Buckland however the return of Juraj Huska and the addition of Gregor McAllan gave the hosts a near full roster. The Junior Raiders were missing Joe Allen, import Jan Marcilis, Daniel Hitchings, Ashlee Cave and Ewan Hill.
The first period had barely begun when Filip Sedivy received a pass from Anthony Leone in the corner and shot the puck inside the left post past young netminder Thomas Adams for the first home goal of the season scored at 01:23.
John Dibble was then called into action with a shot from Matt Brown and Junior Raiders forward George Gell tried to score on the rebound but the netminder padded it into the corner. The game against the local rivals took a violent turn as Alan Lack hit Sedivy near the boards – the Dynamos forward stayed down clutching his arm before being assisted off by his teammates and being left unable to return for the rest of the game.
When play restarted Brandon Webster took two chances at Adams but neither managed to get past the Romford netminder. Forward Jake Stedman then battled for the puck in the neutral zone and carried it into the Junior Raiders end to have a 1-on-0 chance with the goalie and he fired the puck into the top left corner for the home side’s second goal at 11:30.
The frustration from the Romford side started to show as Ross Cowan pushed Dibble over after the whistle which saw Harrison Lillis look to retaliate. The Romford forward skated to his bench.
Tom Davis, Huska, Owen Dell and Ryan Giles teamed up in the Junior Raiders end and took several shots on Adams, but none found the back of the net. Dell and Huska tried their luck again with a one timer but young Ellie Wakeling stood strong and deflected the shot. End of period one and the Dynamos led their home opener 2-0.
The Junior Raiders returned in the second period with more physicality however Stedman got the better of the defence and flicked the puck into the net from the far right to make it three unanswered goals for the Dynamos -this one timed at 21:02.
Down the other end Dibble tried to save a shot from an oncoming Junior Raiders forward, but the puck hit the left bar and bounced out back past the netminder to safety. Dynamos youngster McAllan received a two-minute penalty for tripping and the Romford side got their first powerplay chance of the game. The Junior Raiders pinned the Mos in their own end during the powerplay and Alan Lack made his presence known in front of the net as defenceman Henry Aiken tried to push him away. The two became physical with several slashes and shoves.
Donald Campbell slashed Dibble and pushed the netminder over after the whistle. Giles and Webster chased the Junior Raider round the net and a four-on-four game was the result as Campbell received a two-minute slashing penalty.
The Dynamos were back to full strength as the timer on McAllen’s penalty counted down to the final seconds. Junior Raiders got their fifth player back and Callum Burnett fired the puck from the boards at Dibble and the puck ended up in the net – first goal for the Junior Raiders scored at 32:04.
Burnett was then sent to the penalty box for a two-minute tripping penalty. Giles tired to take the opportunity and fired a slapshot from the blue line, but it was deflected by a stick and went high. Cowan frustrated took his anger out on Dibble once again and shoved the netminder over. Lillis retaliated and chased the forward cross checking him and threw a fist, but the Junior Raider ducked. Cowan received a two-minute interference penalty. Dell then received a two-minute slashing penalty with one-minute remaining of the period.
Lack was later causing trouble for Aiken in front of the net again – the defenceman had enough of him and as the Romford forward skated round the net with the puck, Aiken hit him with a big hit and Lack fell to the ice. End of period two and the Dynamos still led 3-1.
Dynamos started the third period shorthanded as one minute of Dell’s penalty remained. Back to 5-on-5 gameplay and Ryan Morgan skated in slipped the puck between Adams’ pad and blocker for goal four for the hosts scored at 42:59.
Not even 20 seconds later, Elliot Farrell received a pass from Luke Thirkettle in the slot and Farrell with full force sent a shot between Adams’ pads for goal number five scored at 43:15.
The Dynamos were soon down two men as Lillis received a two-minute tripping penalty, quickly followed by Aiken with a two-minute slashing penalty. Romford with powerplay chance however, Huska created a shorthanded chance by battling for the puck and skating hard up centre ice. Young Wakeling stood in his way and the Slovakian forward diverted his hit but caught her skate, sending her to the ice. As Wakeling stood up, her skate blade was missing, and the young defenceman struggled to get to the bench.
Morgan received at penalty for tripping and the Junior Raiders now had an extended 5-on-3 opportunity. Forward Lack took the opportunity and fired the puck past Dibble for Romford’s second goal scored at 46:22 which made the score 5-2.
Finally, the Dynamos were back to full strength, but an exhausted Dibble missed a close range shot from Cowan who netted goal three for the Junior Raiders scored at 51:01.
Soon after Dell and Stedman teamed up and took shots on Adams but neither found the back of the net. Huska received a pass and fired the puck goalbound bit his effort appeared to hit the back post and the play continued.
Defenceman Giles received at two-minute delay of game with just 1:43 remaining. The Romford side called for a time out and the two netminders looked relieved to receive a break from the endless shots. A powerplay goal for Raiders scored by Vilius Krakauskas at 58:35 made the score 5-4.
The Dynamos were back to full strength and the Junior Raiders made the decision to pull Adams. With a faceoff in the Dynamos end, Giles fired a shot towards to empty net, but the final buzzer sounded before the puck reached the target.
First home game of the season and the Dynamos finish with a 5-4 win. Relieved fans and players celebrated with Stedman receiving man of the match for his two goals.
Written by Hannah Lawrence.