The DALROD sponsored Peterborough Phantoms suffered a rare regulation time defeat on Sunday evening at the hands of the Telford Tigers.
For the second successive night, the Phantoms were involved in a 10 goal thriller, which kept the fans on the edge of their seats throughout the game.
The opening 20 minutes saw the fans entertained by a flurry of goals that saw the score 3-3 at the first break.
It was the visitors who took the early initiative, netting two quick goals. Some gritty battling behind the Phantoms goal saw Peter Szabo find GB International Phil Hill who shot past Janis Auzins to make it 0-1. Szabo then netted his first of the game, when his shot trickled under Auzins pads and over the line, when the Phantoms netminder thought he had the puck safe.
Phantoms responded from being two goals to the bad, but striking twice in under a minute to level the game. Lloyd Gibson scored the first, after catching the Tigers defence napping, and James Ferrara then found the back of the net just 56 seconds later after a nice attack from Ales Padelek.
Two minutes later and the TIgers were back in front courtesy of Phantoms old boy Joe Miller, but Darius Pliskauskas setup Marc Levers to level the game before the break.
The second period may have had to wait 19 minutes for the next goal, but it wsn;t without incident and chances as both netminders had to be on the top of their game with Milan Baranyk and Pliskauskas threatening Sam Gospels goal on a number of occasions, whilst the Phantoms youngsters caused the Tigers defence no end of issues. At the other end, Miller and Max Birbraer were both denied by Auzins.
The Phantoms took the lead for the first time on 39 minutes when some clever play saw Ales Padelek bounce the puck off Gospels back, from behind the net to score the Phantoms 4th of the game.
Tigers once again clawed their way into the game, with Max Birbraer finally beating Auzins on 42 minutes wit ha Powerplay goal to make it 4-4.
A mistake then allowed the Tigers to score whilst shorthanded after Birbraer was gifted the puck, and on a 2 on 1 breakaway he found Rick Plant to score on Auzins back post to give the visitors the advantage.
With just over 7 minutes of the game remaining, Sxabo scored his second of the night, converting Birbraers rebound to ma ke it 6-4 to the visitors.
After the game Phantoms Head Coach, Slava Koulikov said “We are always disappointed to lose on our own ice, and that’s even more the case when we were leading going into the final period.
“A loss of concentration cost us as we conceded a penalty on an icing call and then Telford scored on the powerplay that followed to get themselves level. That was a big moment in the game.
“We all know Telford are going through a rough spell, but they are champions for a reason and showed they have quality.”
Visiting Coach Tom Watkins acknowledged that his Tigers were pushed all the way in the game: “Peterborough is a tough place to play and not many teams will walk away from there with two points. I was very pleased with how we came from behind in the third period.
“I was happy with the result, but there are still areas where we have to be better. The guys played with a lot of character at times, which was important.
Koulikov added: “The referee took control of the game and that is something I hate. I think a referee needs to feel and understand such a close game rather than make decisions for the sake of it. We took four 10-minute penalties and we are not a team with poor discipline or one which loses its rag.
“But we still picked up two points in the weekend and that is what we always set out to do.”