The Bees took a trip down the M3 to face the Bison at their home rink on Saturday, hitting the ice for the first time since April. Adan Rosbottom and James Galazzi were absent from the lineup but had the additions of Tyton Cathcart and Lewis English. The Bison were without Adam Jones, however, had the additions of Marcus Mitchell, Roman Cathcart and Ollie Hemmings-Maher to their lineup.
Dominik Gabaj took the opening face-off for the Bees, then Alan Lack found himself in the penalty box with a 2-minute minor roughing penalty timed at 00:06. A strong start to the game from both sides and at 04:10 JJ Pitchley received a 2-minute minor cross-checking penalty but not long after Harvey Stead also found himself with a 2-minute minor holding penalty at 05:05. The Bison took full advantage of the powerplay opportunity. New to the Basingstoke roster, Gael Lubwele opened the Bison scoring for the night with a power play goal timed at 05:41, assists being awarded to former Bees’ Zack Milton and Ryan Sutton. As the goal was scored on the powerplay JJ’s penalty was cut short and he was released from the penalty box while Harvey Stead still had to serve the rest of his penalty.
New Bee, Brendan Walkom created some impressive plays and chances for the Bees in front of the Bison net, however a call for offside stops a chance for the Bees to close the gap. Words began to be exchanged between the two teams which lead to penalties being called on Liam Morris for the Bison as he received 2 minutes for slashing and 2 minutes for roughing timed at 11:51, whilst Alan Lack received a 2-minute minor for slashing timed at 11:51. Joe Baird and Ryan Webb created chances and not long after Brendan skated fast pace towards Lawday in a one on one chance but was shut down. With 40 seconds left of the first period, Morris and Alan Lack found themselves both back in the penalty box receiving holding penalties timed at 19:20, leading to the end of the first period ending at Bison 1-0 Bees.
The Bees started the 2nd period with a face-off win from Dominik Gabaj, however Gael Lubwele created a successful chance for the Bison managing to get the puck to the back of the Bees net increasing the Bison’s lead again at 20:36 with assists being awarded to Josh Kelly and Brendan Baird. The Bees took the next face-off win and a great effort coming from Tyton Cathcart, Josh Martin and Joe Baird along the boards. However, were stopped short by a hit to Dominik Gabaj leading to Alan Lack standing up for his teammate. This resulted in Lack receiving a match penalty pushing the Bees onto a 5-minute penalty kill. However, the Bees were still able to create chances. Chaos in front of the Bees’ net led to a Bison power play goal from Aiden Doughty at 27:33 with an assist going to Gael Lubwele. The Bees did not give up and continued to fight back with some brilliant saves coming from Dan Weller-Evans and a fantastic hit coming from Will Stead. At 36:38 Jay King managed to extend the Bison lead to 4-0 with an assist given to Marcus Mitchell. Brendan soon found himself with a 2-minute minor penalty for cross-checking and an additional 2 minutes for roughing for both Brendan Baird and Josh Martin at 37:21.
When the Bees moved to the power play as Brendan served his 2 minutes for roughing, Dan Rose shot the puck to the back for the Bison net getting past Lawday, giving the Bees their first goal of the night at 38:38 with assists going to Harvey Stead and Stuart Mogg. The end of the second period left it as Bison 4-1 Bees.
Both teams skated onto the ice to start the third and final period with Bees winning the opening period face-off leading to a great early chance for Juha Lindgren and a good hit from Dan Rose on Liam Morris. After many brilliant chances coming from JJ Pitchley and Harvey Stead, Juha Lindgren added to the Bees scoring with a goal scored at 43:23 with assists awarded to Dan Rose and Brendan Walkom.
Then another powerful shot at 44:52 from Dominik Gabaj led to goal 3 for the Bees, with an assist going to Harvey Stead. After this goal, there were many good chances for the Bees as well as the Bison. Some great partner work came from Josh Martin and Dominik Gabaj with a very close shot and a further rebound chance but could not get past Jordan Lawday. Paul Petts faced a 2-minute minor hooking penalty leading to a power play chance for the Bees with 10 minutes left of the game. Another close chance for Brendan Walkom and Josh Smith Josh with a rebound chance couldn’t get past Lawday. Josh Kelly received a 2-minute minor for Holding at 53:24 leading to opportunities for the Bees to equalise as Juha Lindgren sets up some great chances as well as some good hits from Will Stead but nothing came from the power play.
Brendan Walkom, with the help of JJ Pitchley and Joe Baird, got past Lawday to equalise the game at Bison 4-4 Bees at 56:50, however, George Norcliffe was quick to react to Brendan’s goal and at 58:20 put the Bison back into the lead and scored the game-winning goal leaving the score as Bison 5-4 Bees