SOLIHULL Barons go marching on in the EIHA Midlands Cup after a convincing 13-5 win over Blackburn Hawks on Sunday.
The Hobs Moat Road outfit were clear winners and extended their winning start to the season to eight games, having previously beaten the Hawks 10-2 only a month earlier.
Tom Soar found four goals, Adam Brittle, Ruskin Hughes, Matthew Maurice and Daniel Mulcahy all recorded braces, while Daniel Harrison added a solitary strike to the scoreboard.
It took all of three minutes for the opener to arrive, courtesy of Hughes’ well-taken strike between the legs of Niks Trapans.
A powerplay offered the chance to double the lead, which Solihull duly accepted when Dave Rogers found the run of Brittle to finish.
Barons goaltender Sam Hewitt was kept busy and performed heroics to keep Solihull in front at the end of the first 20 minutes, allowing the hosts to score four times in a two-minute spell to take control of the tie.
First, Mulcahy dinked the puck over the Blackburn goalkeeper, followed by Brittle’s poked finish and Maurice’s breakaway goal.
Niklas Ottosson then wound his way past two visiting defenders to pass to Soar to score his first and Solihull’s sixth of the night.
Blackburn were forced into calling a time-out to stem the flow of Solihull pressure, a call which worked wonders as James Royds pulled a goal back before Petr Valusiak struck a second just a minute later.
Before Solihull had time to react, their lead had been reduced to just two goals after Jared Dickinson and James Riddoch found their way past Hewitt.
A breakaway goal from Harrison and a second of the evening for Maurice alleviated any doubts of a comeback by the end of period two, though they brought themselves immediately under pressure with successive two-minute penalties at the beginning of period three.
The Hawks swooped to pull another goal back through Royds during one of the powerplays but then lost momentum once more when Barons’ debutant Henry Adams set-up Soar to restore the four-goal cushion once more.
It was 10-5 to the hosts with eight minutes left when Soar sealed his hat-trick goal with a deflected attempt, prompting himself to score a fourth in addition to Hughes and Mulcahy goals in a late-goal flurry.
The Barons host Sutton Sting in a Midlands Cup encounter on Sunday (5.30pm).