Stars Take Another Step Towards League Title
On Oxford’s St Patrick’s day clash with the Cardiff Fire in their home rink, which marks the Stars’ first time visiting the fair new Ice Arena Wales, the Stars walked out with a stonking 12 – 0 victory to take that extra step closer to securing the league title for this season. While the Fire were looking to make a final push to see them into securing a place in the playoffs, it ended with Oxford taking the points.
The game got off to a bit of a slow start with only one of the many goals scored that night making its way up onto the scoreboard within the first 20 minutes. However, saying this, Oxford did still play well, grinding the Fire to keep them playing defensively until Matt Lawday sunk the puck into the back of the net at just over 17 minutes into the first period.
After walking out onto the ice, past the travelling support, for the start of the second period, it was less than 7 minutes into the period that Dom Hopkins opened the flurry of scoring for the evening. He scored his first goal out of three with the help of Alex Staples and Conor Redmond. A matter of seconds later, Cardiff’s Bryant booked himself a 2 minute time out in the penalty box off the back of a hooking call. Mike Whillock seized the opportunity of Oxford’s power play and scored the third goal with Tait and Hedges earning the assists. From here, Cardiff fell victim to a string of penalties, one after the other, before the Stars scoring twice in a row. Conor Redmond with the first and Joe Edwards with the second, the score going from reading 4 goals to 5 within the space of 60 seconds. A few more penalties saw out the end of the period where Oxford City Stars had a 5 goal buffer zone over the scoreless Welsh side.
The final leg of the match followed a very similar pattern to that of the period previous. A smattering of goals were scored, a spell of penalties and then another load of goals. The list of goal scorers for the 7 goals scored in the third period consists of Dax Hedges, Matt Lawday with another goal, Dom Hopkins having scored two more goals to bag himself a hat trick, Will Harrison, Josh Oliver and again Conor Redmond scoring short-handed to tie the game up.
Mark Duffy also performed well through out the course of the evening by saving every single shot he faced over all three periods, earning a shutout, to aid the Stars in ending up the victors with the final score of Oxford City Stars 12 – 0 Cardiff Fire.