Wightlink Raiders 6, Streatham Redskins 2
A SOLID all-round performance earned Wightlink Raiders victory over a much improved Streatham Redskins side at Ryde Arena on Saturday.
The Redskins, led by former Raider Dominic Hopkins, were overwhelmed in the early stages by Raiders’ dominant play but somehow managed to carve out the opening goal.
However, this triggered Raiders’ killer finish and they immediately hit back when Corey Watkins netted from Jeremy Cornish and Richard Facey’s set-up.
Four minutes later, they edged ahead, through Kieran Annis, while man of the match Facey’s fine solo effort two seconds from the break gave the hosts a good cushion.
The second period was far more even, with a goal apiece, Raiders making it 4-2 through Jiri Hanzal as he tipped in Robbie Brown’s shot, before Hopkins pulled one back for Streatham with his trademark slapshot.
Shortly after this, the first penalties of the game were issued, as Streatham incurred a two-minute minor, while Cornish was sin-binned for ten minutes, for questioning the referee on why he hadn’t given another penalty to the visitors.
The third period featured goals from Brown and Alex Murray — stepping into defence in Dan Pye’s absence — to seal the win.
On Sunday, the Raiders travelled to Cardiff ENL Devils, and relinquished a 2-0 lead with around 15 minutes left to draw 3-3.
Player-coach Cornish said on the club’s website: "Well, we let another one slip in Cardiff.
"We seem to have a bit of difficulty closing out close games and that is something we are going to really need to focus on this week in training."
This weekend, Raiders host Romford in the cup at Ryde Arena tomorrow (Saturday) before making the short trip to Solent and Gosport Devils on Sunday in the league. Face-off against Romford is at 6pm.