Three goals without reply was not enough to see the Invicta Dynamos overturn a 5-1 third period deficit on Saturday night as they fell 5-4 on the road to the London Raiders despite a brave fightback in the last.
The Mos were just short of three full lines following the departure of former captain Bobby Chamberlain whilst Mason Webster had to watch from the other side of the plexi following removal of four wisdom teeth in week. The visitors did however hand a debut to new recruit Justin Robinson and restored Damien King back into the nets where he faced his brother Euan in the opposite goal.
Without the safeguard of Mason Webster on the ice, the London Raiders took the opportunity to hassle Dynamos import Adam Rehak and within 27 seconds Alan Lack went in late on the Czech causing both players to start tangling and receiving roughing penalties as a result. Roll-on 20 seconds later and the Mos were 1-0 down – Oliver Baldock blasting past Damien King with Juraj Huska the provider. The travelling Mos fans were then probably fearing the worse on 03.17 when Brandon Ayliffe and Thomas Beesley combined with the former beating King for 2-0.
The visitors were handed a great chance a few minutes later – the Raiders down to three skaters following penalties against Tom Davis (high sticks) and Marek Nahlik (tripping) and they were made to pay when Josh Condren stroked the puck past Euan King and into the top right corner of the net – Ryan Morgan and Callum Fowler claiming the assists. Despite clawing one back though the Mos were always second best in the opening period and it was of little surprise when Huska restored the two goal advantage on 13.02 – the predator feeding off a move started by Euan King and then Jake Sylvester providing the killer pass to Huska for 3-1.
Damien King faced 20 shots in the opening frame and an impressive double save from Nahlik helped keep the score line to just a two goal deficient before the buzzer – however there was still time for the Rehak and Lack show to continue. A late challenge by Lack on Rehak on 19.41 caused the Mos import to see fire and drop the gloves for a fight that was pretty even. Once order was restored referee Matt Thompson gave Lack 2+2 for fighting whilst Rehak was presented with 2+2+2 minutes, also for fighting.
With the Dynamos only registering 5 shots on Euan King during the 1st period they improved that tally in the second period to 9, but the home side were still the busier team and almost doubled the Mos count. The away fans were in disbelief when Seb Downing and Euan King collided whilst both racing for the puck – Downing getting 2 minutes (for charging) and heading to the box to keep Rehak company. So it was of no surprise when the Raiders edged 4-1 in front in the 21st minute – villain from previous encounters JJ Pitchley feeding off Baldock to defeat Damien King on the 5 v 3 powerplay.
The 5 on 3 scenario was switched the other way a while later with the Raiders Marek Nahlik and Olegs Lascenko both sitting minor penalties but, despite the huff and puff of the Mos, the closest they came to scoring was through Ondrej Zosiak who hit post when striking from distance. A big save by Damien King against Huska just about kept the visitors in the game just before the Raiders had to kill another powerplay when Julian Smith tripped Josh Condren in the 32nd minute though Euan King was rarely troubled. Juraj Huska then doubled his goal count in the 37th minute – linking-up with John Connolly to beat Damien King for 5-1.
The Mos came to life during the final period and were handed a bit of luck on the 42nd minute when a loose puck presented Harrison Lillis with a one-on-one v Euan King and the Mos defender turned forward casually roofed into the net for 5-2. The Mos were now flying and Scott Bailey almost grabbed another goal back within seconds of the Lillis strike as the Kent side boldly went on the attack. Another powerplay was presented to the Mos in the 47th minute after JJ McGrath was called for charging and a minute into the powerplay the Mos made it 5-3 when Tommy Ralph drilled past Euan King after Callum Fowler weaved through challenges to cut the puck back to the Yorkshire man.
Ralph doubled his points tally in the 50th minute – starting a move which involved Seb Downing who in turn found Adam Rehak with the import dispatching the puck beyond King for 5-4 and triggering the Raiders to call a timeout. Despite much effort in the final ten minutes the Dynamos couldn’t grab that equalising goal although Scott Bailey and Callum Fowler did have half chances to almost grab the headlines.
So it was defeat for the Mos who will look to grab revenge on the Raiders at home the following weekend. Man of the match for the Kent side went to Ryan Morgan and for the home side Sean Barry was presented with the beers. Damien King faced a total of 48 shots for a save percentage of 89.58% whilst his brother Euan at the opposite end produced a percentage of 83.33% after facing 24 shots.
Written by Lee Allen.