The Invicta Dynamos fell to a heavy away defeat at the hands of the Solent Devils on Saturday night despite scoring the first goal of the game.
Anthony Leone was able to recall Arran Strawson (back) and Kieron Jones (ankle) from injury to ice 16 skaters with Ryan Giles, Gregor McAllan, Mark Williams and Tomas Banovsky all unavailable. Netminder Zach Grandy-Smith started in goal.
The away side went ahead on 03:15 when Leone found Huska on the edge of the left circle and the Slovakian hit a first timer beyond netminder Chico Cole for a perfect start for the Mos. However, the lead only lasted a minute when failure to clear the puck away led to Mitchell Murray and Alex Cole setting-up former Dynamo Steve Osman who slammed the puck past Grandy-Smith from the edge of the crease.
Invicta then put two attempts on Cole – first a Strawson shot on the turn was unsuccessful whilst Brandon Webster did well to bundle his way free of a defender to shoot under the chin of the goalie. With the Mos failing to capitalise on their chances they gifted Solent an excellent path to apply pressure on them when they had to defend a 5 on 3 powerplay after a Jake Stedman cross-check and icing too many men saw them pinned back defending for their lives. It was no surprise when Osman knocked the puck back to Ralfs Circenis who slapped a shot into the net from the blue line on 12:37. Two minutes later Drew Campbell roofed the puck home from the blue line to double the lead to 3-1, assisted by Osman.
The Mos needed a quick reply in the 2nd period and they got just that when Ben Lock and Alex Murray were both penalised giving Invicta a 5 on 3 powerplay which they duly scored from – Leone tapping the puck back to Tom Davis on the blue line who hit a slapshot through a crowd of bodies for 3-2 on 22:37. Webster then fired an attempt wide and moments later Invicta should have drawn level when Farrell hit a pass that took out 3 Solent players and sent Huska clear but, when presented with a chance to shoot, the forward elected to deke and it gave Cole enough time to smother the puck.
Failure to convert that chance was well and truly punished when Facey made it 4-2 on 26:28. Invicta then held firm to defend a Dale Buckland penalty for holding an opponent’s stick but suspect defending again let them down when Cirencis shot from the right wing into an exposed net (5-2) with Grandy-Smith already down having saved an earlier shot on 31:15.
Invicta iced too many men again in the 32nd minute and defended the powerplay well before they were put in a similar position themselves on 37:52 when Osman was called for roughing at Webster. The visitors took advantage by scoring to make it 5-3 when Strawson found Huska on the left flank who hit the puck across the crease for Webster to knock into the net.
The final period saw a massive collapse at the back for the Mos. Firstly when Solent scored in the 45th minute when Lewis escaped down the right and beat Grandy-Smith at the near post for 6-3 which also saw Owen Rider introduced into the action in place of Grandy-Smith. Then 3 Solent goals in just over two minutes put the game out of reach for Invicta when Alex Murray, Calumn Perella-Fox and Elliott Lewis all scored to bring the score up to 9-3.
An Invicta timeout did little to refocus the minds with further goals added by Mark Pitts and Daniel Lackey finished Invicta’s painful night on 11-3.
Solent Points: M. Murray 0+1, M. Pitts 1+2, A. Cole 0+3, D. Lackey 1+0, K. Annis 0+1, H. Cloutman 0+1, E. Lewis 2+1, A. Campbell 1+0, S. Cooper 0+1, R. Facey 1+4, R. Circenis 2+2, C. Perella-Fox 1+0, C. Farrell 0+1, B. Lock 0+1, A. Murray 1+0, S. Osman 1+2
Invicta Points: B. Webster 1+0, T. Davis 1+0, A. Leone 0+2, A. Strawson 0+1, J. Huska 1+1
Solent: C. Cole – 92.31% (39 shots / 3 goals)
Invicta: Z. Grandy-Smith – 81.82% (33 shots / 6 goals), O. Rider – 50.00% (10 shots / 5 goals)
Man of the Match:
Solent: Elliot Lewis
Invicta: Anthony Leone
Written by Lee Allen