After three away games in a row, The Tomahawks were back on home ice for the first time since mid January for the local derby against Northern Stars. The Stars have had a difficult season both on and off the ice, after being evicted from the Metro Radio Arena only weeks into the new campaign, and now play their home games out of Whitley. Results on the ice haven`t been great either, but they are always tough opponents so nothing can be taken for granted against them. Coach Salem gives back-up netminder Jordan Boyle a start against his former club and also in the home line up are former Stars Kyle Ross, Adam Finlinson and Natasha Crozier.
As expected The Tomahawks were quick out of the blocks, with Jack Davies being denied on the doorstep by Kyran Kerry in the Stars goal in the opening seconds. Finlinson found himself in the penalty box at 2.41 for elbows, but the Tomahawks took the lead at 3.02 with a short-handed goal from Ben Richards, firing in a low shot from the right wing after being sent clear by a Matty Campbell pass. Davies doubled the home sides lead at 6.45, firing past the statuesque Kerry after being set up by Sean Bamling. Kerry was performing heroics in the Stars net, but was beaten for the third time at 7.41 when Kyle Ross scored from close range after good work by Callum Read and Callum Queenan. Richards then saw a shot hit the post late in the period while his side were short-handed again and Kerry managed to keep the score to 3-0 by sitting on the loose puck. Shots in the period were 27 on Kerry and 0 on Boyle, which showed the dominance of the home side.
Boyle was called into his first action of the game in the opening seconds of the 2nd period when he denied Luke Shanks a breakaway opportunity with a great pad save. Only seconds later, Dale Sharp added a fourth goal for the Tomahawks when Matthew Hoggins found him unmarked in front of goal and the Captain made no mistake with a clinical finish. The visitors found themselves on the penalty-kill at 16.06 when Daniel Anderson was called for high sticks and the Tomahawks made them pay when Richards scored his second of the game after Sharp set him up with a pass from behind the net. Despite being overrun for much of the game the Stars were still battling and deservedly got on the score sheet at 17.20 when the home side fumbled the puck on their own blue line and it fell to Shanks who in one movement caught it mid air, dropped it to his stick, and fired it past Boyle. Davies grabbed his 2nd goal of the game at 27.16 when he was allowed to walk in from the corner and fire past the totally exposed Kerry after 10 minutes of sustained pressure by the home side. Anderson was sent to the penalty box for the second time in the game at 27.21 for Delay of Game, and once again the Tomahawks capitalized with another power-play goal from Richards at 27.54, his hat-trick marker, after nice interplay with Sharp and Harry Harley. The Tomahawks finished the period with a 7-1 lead and had an incredible 35 shots on Kerry in the period.
The 3rd period was dominated once again by the Tomahawks with Read and Campbell almost adding to the score, but the only goal of the period was scored at 43.31 by Bamling, tapping home on the goal line after Harleys shot sneaked under the pads of Kerry for his sides 8th goal. Final Score 8-1.
Spirit of the Game; #81 Dean Kerr
Goals; Ben Richards 3+0, Jack Davies 2+1, Sean Bamling 1+1, Kyle Ross 1+0, Harry Harley 0+3, Matty Campbell 0+1, Matty Hoggins 0+1, Callum Read 0+1, Callum Queenan 0+1.
PIM`s; Whitley 14, Stars 4.
Shots Faced; Jordan Boyle ( Whitley ) 6, Kyran Kerry ( Stars ) 88.