Phantoms Bitten By Tigers

The DALROD sponsored Peterborough Phantoms were on the wrong end of a 6-2 defeat on Saturday evening when the Telford Tigers came to town. The game saw a 30minute stoppage in the closing 6 minutes as Telford Scott McKenzie took a hard hiot on the boards and had to be taken to hospital for checks.

McKenzie was taken to hospital complaining of neck pain – but was discharged on Sunday morning thankfully nursing nothing more serious than a concussion – after being hurt by a hit from Phantoms import Erik Piatak, who received a five-plus-match penalty.

Telford were 4-2 up when play was halted with 6:46 left on the clock and they added two further goals during the powerplay that followed upon its resumption to condemn Phantoms to defeat.

It was hardly the rousing response the hosts had pledged to deliver after crashing to the heaviest defeat in their history – 11-0 against Manchester – last weekend.

Head coach Jon Kynaston admitted: “We’ve hit a bump in the road and we need to play our way out of it. That will require a better response than we saw tonight.

“We haven’t become bad people or a bad team overnight, but we have to dig in and work a lot harder for each other than we have done in the last six periods of hockey.

“The great spirit we had in the camp last season has been absent in the last couple of games and we need to get it back.

“We have a lot of guys who are new to the club and don’t necessarily know what Peterborough is all about.

“In our building it is about producing aggressive hockey and playing with pride.”

Kynaston was quick to insist there was no malice on Piatak’s part during the incident that led to Telford captain McKenzie being hurt. He claims that is also a view shared by match referee Liptrott

Kynaston added: “It is never nice to see a player in a bad way and naturally everyone at Peterborough wishes Scott all the best.

“I spoke to the referee who agreed with my view of it being a fair hit and it is very frustrating that he has had to call a match penalty due to the injury.

“Erik’s speed and bodyweight created a lot of momentum, but I don’t believe there was any intention to hurt Scott.”

The opening half of this contest won’t live long in the memory, but the game exploded into life seconds after its mid-point.

Telford, who had successfully killed off a handful of Phantoms powerplays, including 80 seconds of five-on-three in the opening period, made the most of their first numerical advantage of the night as James Preece snatched a rebound to give the visitors a 1-0 lead.

The lead didn’t even last a minute as Erik Piatak pounced to level but Phantoms soon found themselves playing second fiddle again.

Nathan Salem restored the visitors’ advantage on another powerplay before the pivotal moment arrived in the final second of the middle section as McKenzie was deemed to have notched a third Telford goal before the buzzer sounded.

Tom Soar halved Phantoms’ arrears early in the final period but any thoughts of a fightback were ended by a second McKenzie effort and, following his unfortunate exit, they picked off Phantoms with two further goals from Salem and Miika Kiviranta.

The teams do battle again tomorrow (Sunday) in Shropshire when Phantoms will be able to ice only three imports due to Piatak’s suspension.

Man of the Match went to Tom Soar for the Phantoms and Declan Ryan (NM) for the Tigers

Report courtesy of the Peterborough Evening Telegraph

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