SOLIHULL Barons booked their place in the final of the Midlands Cup after seeing off Nottingham Lions in a 5-1 victory on Sunday.
A late rally from the Barons at Hobs Moat Road made the nature of the win appear far more convincing, though it was anything but a straightforward encounter in reality.
The opener went the way of the hosts after seven minutes, when Andy Whitehouse diverted the puck home from close range.
Though the majority of the play was inside the Lions half, Solihull were unable to take advantage and held a slender one-goal lead heading into the second period.
While the Barons continued to enjoy possession of the puck, the resolute Nottingham defence and solid net-minding from Joshua Crane snuffed out any attempts to put the game out of sight.
Eventually, the hosts’ dominance forced a second goal when Tom Soar fired into the net, before Adam Brittle finished off after a game of pinball in the Lions’ goalmouth.
Connor Glossop kept the visitors in the game when beating Sam Hewitt, giving Nottingham a brief glimmer of hope until Soar finished from Brittle’s centre.
With Solihull’s three-goal cushion restored, a fifth and final goal of the night followed in the third period when Matt Maurice’s stick deflected in Dave Rogers’ shot.
The Barons will now contest a two-legged final against Blackburn Hawks over the weekend of February 15 and 16, following their opponents’ 10-6 win against Sutton Sting in the other semi-final.
Nottingham will be in the hunt for revenge in Sunday’s (7.30pm) Moralee Division meeting with Solihull at the National Ice Centre.