PAISLEY PIRATES 4 ABERDEEN LYNX 3
In front of easily their largest crowd of the season, Pirates recorded a critical 4-3 win over nearest challengers Aberdeen to move clear at the top of the Scottish National League, but once again their supporters had to endure several fraught period during the game.
The home side were on the powerplay within a minute and with the extra space, Wilson linked up with Miller and Hassan to put them ahead wiles than two minutes on the clock. The importance of the game was clearly felt by the players on both sides as during the period there was a regular flow of penalties called, but with both goalies in good form there was no other disturbance to the scoreboard, Pirates going in at the first break holding a narrow one goal advantage.
The Renfrewshire side came out the blocks quickly in the middle session and had doubled their advantage with only fifty seconds played, as Jordan Ross was up with the forward to score a rare goal, Chalmers in the visitors net getting a hand to the puck, but was unable to stop it going over the line. With chances coming at both ends again it was something of a surprise that it took until the halfway point in the period for another goal to come, as a shot parried by Chalmers was bundled over the line by the onrushing Orr, the goal standing in spite of protests from the visitors. Aberdeen were back in it a few minutes later, though, as Laing pulled one back with a rocket shot from just inside the blue line to give his team some hope at 3-1 going into the final session.
Once again, the final session also began with a goal within two minutes of the restart, but this time it was to put Lynx right back in it , a speculative cross come shot by Dyer deceiving everyone to finish in Meechan’s net an pull the score back to 3-2. Pirates continued to have marginally the better of the play and at the halfway point they scored a great goal as Johnston took the puck forward and waited until Blair was in the perfect position to slot it behind Chalmers to provide a little insurance with the lead doubled once again. However, Pirates’ fans once again had the chance to bite their fingernails as with less than five minutes to go they were playing off a 5 on 3 disadvantage with both Jordan and Thorpe sitting our minor penalties. They safely negotiated the first part but lost a goal with less than 4 minutes left as McIntosh scored to bring it back to a one-goal game again. With the visitors looking to pull their netminder for the extra skater in the last minute, they lost their momentum as Findlay was penalised for Slashing, and Pirates safely kept the puck in their possession to record a crucial win.
EDINBURGH CAPITALS 3 PAISLEY PIRATES 3
Pirates withstood a Capitals fightback to claim a point in Edinburgh and extend their lead at the top of the SNL table.
In a tight opening period, the visitors had more of the play than the hosts, with Mallinson in the home goal regularly called into action, but it wasn’t until the 18th minute that Pirates took the lead with the only goal of the session, Riddell scoring the vital opening marker to send his team in at the break nursing their slender lead.
In the middle session, Edinburgh were first on the board after 25 minutes as Hay netted the first of a double to square the match, but before the halfway point in the game Pirates’ lead was restored as Campbell beat Mallinson to make it 2-1, and with team mate Guy also getting on the scoresheet with less than six minutes of the period remaining, it was looking good for the visitors as the clock ran down. However, with only seconds remaining in the session, the Caps were right back in it as Wallace scored to bring it back to 3-2 at the break.
Pirates were continuing to incur the wrath of referee Graham, who meted out 54 minutes in penalty minutes to the visitors, and once again they lost a powerplay goal at the halfway point in the final session, their third such loss of the night, as Hay netted his second while the home side had the extra player. The visitors continued to push for a winner, but in the final two minutes of play their efforts were thwarted as the home goal was separated from its moorings on no fewer than six occasions, all without penalty, and at the end they had to settle for a draw which puts them a further point ahead of the chasing pack.
Pirates face the Capitals in the return match for more vital league points this Sunday at Braehead Arena, face off at 6.00pm.