Sunday saw the Buccaneers hosted Flintshire at Blackburn Arena in the return fixture from our trip to Deeside earlier in the year. That game finished 10-1 to the Phantoms so the Buccs were under no illusions that this was going to be tough. Especially with only 4 defencemen and 8 forwards facing a full Flintshire bench.
The game got underway and it was end to end from the off with both teams having chances to take the lead. It would be the Buccaneers who would break the deadlock though. Jade Bolton won a face-off deep in the Flintshire zone to Mark Jenkins. He nudged the puck back to Michael Walsh on the point who fired a quick shot on the Flintshire goal. Despite a good first save from the Flintshire netminder, Adam Bolton was on hand to force the rebound in and give the home side an unexpected lead.
Flintshire came back hard but a standout performance from Jimmy Tse in the Buccaneers goal kept them at bay and the lead stood until the break.
The message after one period was more of the same and despite best efforts, Flintshire had turned a 1-goal deficit into a 1-goal lead within 56 seconds of the second period.
The two quick-fire goals were the only tallies for the period thanks to some solid goalkeeping and a little help from the frame of the goal but there was plenty of goalmouth action to keep the bumper crowd of almost 30 entertained. The second period ended 2-1 in favour of the visitors.
The third started in the same way the second did with the Phantoms bagging an insurance goal early on. Again though, this did not deter the Buccs and they continued to throw everything they had on the opposing goal. Ultimately though, it wasn’t quite enough and Flintshire held on to the two-goal lead for a 3-1 victory.
Despite the loss, it was a solid team performance from the Buccaneers and everyone left the ice with their heads held high.
MVP for the Buccs was Mark Jenkins who threatened the Flintshire goal all night with some great speed shown down the wings.
MVP for the Phantoms was James Ashbrook who dictated play in the Buccs zone for extended periods throughout the game.
We asked Buccaneers goalscorer and alternate captain for the day, Adam Bolton for this thoughts on the game:
I thought everybody played extremely well with nobody giving up or letting their heads drop. When you consider the score a few weeks ago and being short-benched, I think we probably surprised a few people with the performance, ourselves included. Hopefully, we’ll be able to bad a dew more goals going into the Sheffield and Wyre games
Special mention to Adam Duxbury who made his debut for the club and Jimmy Tse who made his first Buccs appearance for a number of years.
The team would like to thank everyone who came down to watch and especially those that helped with off-ice duties.
We return to action on 14th May when we welcome the Sheffield Ice Tigers to Blackburn in an Ice Hockey Summer Classic league game. We took a 6-4 win on the road in Sheffield last time out and will be looking to add to our league points again here!