Sometimes Hockey weekends are like buses, you wait ages for a four point weekend and then two come along together!
Saturday saw the Phantoms host the Swindon Wildcats for the third and final time at home in the regular league season. After winning their last two home games against the Wiltshire outfit, confidence was high going into the clash.
A cagey opening 20 minutes saw the Phantoms strike first as James White setup Darius Pliskauskas to core the games opening goal after just 1.46 of the game. It was a lead the Phantoms were to hold until 9.59 when Wildcats levelled the game thanks to a Max Birbraer delayed penalty goal.
A Holding penalty on Connor Glossop early in the middle period gave the Wildcats all the advantage they needed to take the lead when Jordan Kelsall popped up on 26.30.
Phantoms drew level with a powerplay goal of their own on 34.18, when James Archer converted Petr Stepeneks pass whilst Wildcats Steve Whitfield sat out an interference penalty.
All square going into the final stanza and the next goal was going to the crucial. With under 2 minutes of the period played, Tom Norton fired a rocket of a slapshot from the blueline which left Stevie Lyle motionless as the puck flew into the top corner of the goal to make it a 3-2 Phantoms lead.
Five minutes later and it was game over as the Phantoms netted their fourth goal of the game, courtesy of Ales Padelek, to make it 4-3 on the night and hand the Phantoms a clean sweep of victories against the Wildcats.
Sunday saw the Phantoms travel North to Blackpool to visit the Manchester Phoenix in their temporary rink. Whilst the Phoenix are struggling this season at the bottom of the league, the Phantoms knew they couldn’t take this game lightly and had to take control from the opening face-off.
Phantoms started the stronger but were dealt a blow after just 1.17 when Sam Towner was dismissed from the game for an accidental high stick penalty.
The Phantoms shuffled the lines and it was Petr Stepanek who opened the scoring on 13 minutes with the assist going to Will Weldon. Stepanek then turned provider as he helped Weldon net the Phantoms second goal of the night just before the first break.
The Middle period saw the Phantoms dominate play and end the game as a contest. James Archer netted against his old team on 29.16 before a double strike from Ales Padelek on 34.38 and 39.32 gave the visitors a 5-0 lead at the second interval.
Denis Bell replaced Stephen Fone in the Phoenix goal for the final period, whilst any homes of a Janis Auzins shutout were lost 37 seconds after the restart as Robin Kovar and Roman Milinik teamed up for Milinik to fire home.
Final goal of the evening came courtesy of Darius Pliskauskas who netted the Phantoms 6th on 49.27 to move the Phantoms back to the top half of the league table.