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By Jamie Arrowsmith Wednesday 20 February 2013 Updated: 20/02 17:17
Sheffield Senators 4 Solihull Barons 2
National Ice Hockey League North Two
BARONS’ frailties away from home were exposed on Sunday afternoon as they fell to a 4-2 defeat against league leaders Sheffield Senators.
The puck had been on the ice for less than a minute when Nathan Britton made the most of errors in Barons’ defence to put the home side ahead.
Three minutes later and the same player exploited another slip-up to put Senators in early control.
Despite the shock of the opening five minutes, Barons regained a degree of composure to see out the period, stemming Senators’ ambitions and peppering their goal with shots, albeit with no reward.
On the half hour mark, Mike Rodger, once again staking his claim as Barons’ most spectacular player, made an end to end dash to put the puck beyond Mark Hartley and reduce the gap.
With only one goal in it as the two sides emerged from the changing rooms for the final period there was real hope amongst Barons’ ranks that they could get something out of the game.
However, within a couple of minutes, Sheffield’s Jonathan Kirk dampened those hopes when sending Senators further clear.
As the game reached the closing stages, Jake Larkin reignited Barons hopes, cutting Sheffield’s lead back to a single goal, but it was not to be for the visitors as Britton completed his hat-trick in the final 30 seconds.
After the game, Barons coach Darren Bellerby was philosophical about the result, saying: “Last week’s game didn’t do us any favours, going from a very small rink to a much larger rink. But the facts are the team didn’t get going until half way through the second period but by then the damage was done through two defensive errors in the first period.”
Barons will now regroup to ensure they make the most of the remaining games of the season, starting with Sunday’s Steve Perks Memorial Cup game, a crucial and likely very closely fought league fixture against Deeside Dragons (6pm).
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