In a thrilling first-period showdown, the Aspray Chester Deeside Dragons and the Blackburn Hawks took to the ice in an evenly-matched contest. Both teams displayed a strong performance, with the Dragons managing 13 shots on goal and the Hawks close behind with 12 shots.
The game started with high energy, as both teams wasted no time in displaying their offensive prowess. The Dragons’ forwards made several impressive plays, applying pressure on the Hawks’ defence and goaltender. However, the Hawks demonstrated resilience and determination, responding with their own offensive drives that kept the Dragons on their toes.
The first period saw both teams struggle to maintain discipline, with numerous penalties awarded. Deeside found themselves down three players due to time in the penalty box, while Blackburn accumulated a total of six penalties. These infractions led to a series of power play opportunities for both sides, but neither team was able to capitalise on these chances to take the lead.
With the game remaining scoreless after the first period, the stage was set for a nail-biting second period.
The second period of the game between the Aspray Chester Deeside Dragons and the Blackburn Hawks proved to be an intense and action-packed affair. The Hawks managed to break the deadlock and open a 2-goal lead, while the Dragons fought back with a stunning solo effort to keep themselves in the game.
Blackburn Hawks’ first goal came at 26:11 when Watson found the back of the net after a swift and well-executed play. The Hawks’ fans roared with approval as their team took the lead, and the players fed off the energy to maintain their momentum. Their persistence paid off at 29:15 when Harcourt doubled the lead, capitalising on a turnover and firing a quick shot past the Dragons’ goaltender.
Despite the 2-goal deficit, the Dragons refused to back down and continued to push for a way back into the game. Their determination was rewarded at 35:29 when Petr Valusiak showcased his individual skill with an impressive solo goal. Picking up the puck at the red line, Valusiak charged towards the Hawks’ net, weaving past a Hawks defender before unleashing a powerful drive that left the Hawks’ goal tender with no chance.
As the second period came to an end, the Dragons found themselves down by one goal, but their spirited response to the Hawks’ lead demonstrated their resilience and fighting spirit.
In a dramatic turn of events during the third period, the Aspray Chester Deeside Dragons staged a sensational comeback against the Blackburn Hawks, snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. The game saw both teams fighting tooth and nail, with the Dragons ultimately prevailing with a 4-3 win.
The Blackburn Hawks started the third period strong, extending their lead to 3-1 with a goal from Jurinenoks. The Hawks’ netminder displayed a stellar performance, thwarting the Dragons’ attempts to find the back of the net. With the Blackburn bench and fans growing increasingly confident, it seemed as though the game was all but decided.
However, the Dragons refused to give up. At 54:47, Ross Kennedy ignited hope with a solo goal, reducing the deficit to 3-2. The Dragons’ comeback was further aided by the Hawks picking up four penalties in the last five minutes of the game. This gave the Dragons the power play advantage they needed to turn the tide.
At 55:53, Jared Dickinson capitalised on the power play, equalising the score at 3-3. With the comeback now within reach, the Den erupted just 20 seconds later when club captain Matt Wainwright scored the go-ahead goal, making it 4-3 in favour of the Dragons.
The final whistle signalled the completion of an incredible comeback, with the Aspray Chester Deeside Dragons securing a hard-fought victory. The Dragons’ netminder, Mike Rogers, was awarded the Most Valuable Player for his outstanding performance in goal, helping the team achieve this memorable win.
In a game that will be remembered for its intense action and thrilling conclusion, the Aspray Chester Deeside Dragons proved that perseverance and determination can lead to victory, even in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds.
The Dragons will be back in action on home ice Next Saturday when we will face Whitley Warriors in the first leg of our quarter-final playoff game. Tickets will be available from Monday
During Sunday’s match, we were delighted to have Shelter Cymru join us in our efforts to boost awareness and aid. As a community-centric, not-for-profit club, we take pride in endorsing and assisting groups such as Shelter Cymru. If you wish to contribute, please follow this link to donate: https://sheltercymru.org.uk/donate