This week Lions were missing the influential GB under 20’s international, Connor Glossop, Slawomir Kasprzak, youngsters Jon Binder and Jordan Liddell.
Returnees were Samuel Jackson and Joe Gretton. Making his Lions debut was 17 year old Jake Fisher another product of the Nottingham Junior Programme.
The game started with both netminders, Aran Fox and Tom Hovell making early saves. Nearly five minutes up, Jaroslav Kucej intercepted the puck, passing beyond the Lions defence, leaving Aces Captain, Brian Worrall free to challenge Lions goaltender one on one, Worrall beating Hovell guiding the puck out of reach into the net for one – nil.
The first power play came Nottingham’s way in the eighth minute, when Altrincham were adjudged to have too many men on the ice by Referee Brooks.
Plenty of shots but no goals during the first Lions power play, but it was soon Aces turn for a man advantage. Rob Perks sent for holding, followed two minutes after by Adam Andrews on a slashing penalty.
A minute of five on five, two minutes before the break, a turnover at the tope of Lions blue line became costly as Altrincham’s Joe Greaves shot into Tom Hovell’s pads, only for the puck to rebound kindly for Deivid Cetvertak to fire it high in the top corner to make two – nil to the Aces.
Three minutes into the second period and Mason Howard misguided a clearance over the Penalty box and gave the lino-ref no option but to award the penalty. Before the two minutes were up Luke Thomas was penalised for tripping. On the resulting power play Altrincham took a three – nil lead. John Murray converting his own rebound.
Joe Humphries was sent for a cross checking penalty on twenty- five minutes and Jared Dickinson again for cross checking, thirty minutes gone. Humphries sat it out again six minutes later, appearing to trip his opponent, but was given a penalty for elbows.
Three minutes from the break, Altrincham’s Dan Berry was sent for interference, then Luke Thomas again in the fortieth minute with a tripping penalty.
The third and final period began with Lions shorthanded, but a minute after returning to full strength, a shot from Kieran De’Ath fed the puck to Cetvertak, whose shot could not be held by Goaltender Tom Hovell and Michael Gilbert was on hand to roof the rebound.
Mason Howard then returned to the penalty bench, this time for hooking in the forty-seventh minute, quickly followed by Lions Ben Wilson for slashing. In the fifty-third, Wilson and Steve Saunders had a minor altercation in front of goal, both receiving 2+2 roughing penalties.
The fifty-forth minute saw Nottingham switch netminders, giving an ice-time debut for GB Women’s international, Samantha Bolwell taking over from Tom Hovell.
Eighteen seconds later, a determined skate and lightning shot by Elliot Perrin sailed past keeper Fox into the middle back padding of the net, but as quick as the puck was in it was straight back out, the lino-refs allowed play to carry on, despite the Lions celebrations and the judge activating the red light. It was at the next stoppage in play after much deliberation when the officials consulted the goal judge before awarding the goal.
Lions had six minutes to rescue the game. However any hopes Lions had, were thwarted when Phillip Proudlove unleashed a dipping shot through traffic Dickinson and Cetvertak with the assists, four minutes from time.
Dan Hazeldine (pictured above) picked up the Man Of The Match Award with Elliott Perrin (pictured below) scoring Lions sole marker.
Head Coach Matt Bradbury was pleased with his teams performance and spoke with Lions Radio immediately after the game
Lions are back in action this Sunday at the National Ice Centre vs local rivals Coventry Blaze. Face off is 7.30pm.