ICE HOCKEY: TEN of the best helped Solihull Barons secure a four goal victory against Dragons of Deeside in their opening pre-season friendly at the weekend.
Both sides lined up light of players due to various holidays, and Deeside took the early advantage – scoring after just 18 seconds of play with a shot from the slot.
It didn’t take long for the Barons to level though as Andy Whitehouse skated into the corner to the front of the net and struck the puck to open Solihull’s account.
Whitehouse’s goal set off a flurry of scoring for the Barons as the Dragons struggled to get into the game as Richard Crowe shot from the has marks through crowded traffic for Barons’ second.
Tom Soar then had a two on one. Smart play saw Soar pass to Ottosson, who shot through the Dragons netminder’s legs.
Luke Brittle then scored his first Solihull goal after three passes between himself Harrison and Soar from one wing to the other.
By now, the Whitehouse line was all over the Deeside team – allowing them no time to settle on the puck.
With Deeside puck watching for the last five minutes, coach Scott McKenzie called a timeout at seven minutes.
This worked well, settling the Dragons and restricting Solihull to one more goal in the period as Tom Soar scored from a flick over a defender’s stick from Brittle
Deeside book-ended the period by scoring their second goal with six seconds left on the clock – a great performance by Nicholls keeping them to two goals.
The second period started with Solihull 5-2 up but at the end they were 7-5 up as Deeside had their best period.
Barons two goals of the middle period coming off the sticks of new boy Phil Mulcahy and the ever strong sniping of Niklas Ottosson,
The third period saw both sides competing at speed until the final whistle with Solihull winning the period 3-1 to round off a good warm-up tie.
The Barons conclude their short pre-season next weekend with road and home ties against the Blackburn Hawks.
Solihull head up to Lancashire on the Saturday to take on the consistently strong Hawks before the team clash 24 hours later at Silverblades. Face-off is at 6pm.