SUTTON Sting U14 boosted their play-off ambitions after dominating the Sheffield Sabres to win 8-2.
This was a must win game for the Sting and they started with a clear demonstration of intent, netting the first goal with 2:14 on the clock through Charlie Saunders.
Sheffield battled hard to keep the Sting at bay and in so doing conceded penalties which provided the Sting with a man advantage and goal scoring chances.
As the game unfolded the Sting’s greater threat was realised and Saunders got his second on 5:02.
One minute later Saunders received a major penalty, which meant a change in line personnel.
Sheffield’s goalie was under constant attack, but he stood tall keeping his side in the contest and as the first period ended 2-0 to Sutton he had faced 17 shots.
But it was one-way traffic and it took just two minutes for the Sting to re-group and get their net presence felt by the Sabres.
With 17:24 played Sting’s Jake Apsley scored Sutton’s third goal and the tension was about to increase.
With both teams desperate to get on top, the body-checks became more fierce and with the increase in physical play emotions ran high.
It was the Sting who handled the pressure better and they scored two more goals to end the period 5-0 up, with Brady Doxey and Owen Lawton exploiting their chances.
At the start of the third period the Sabres upped their tempo and set about the Sting who had become complacent.
Sheffield’s hard work was rewarded on 31:31 when team captain Lewis Otley scored a great goal to bring back the deficit to four.
Less than four minutes later Jake Barnett netted for the visitors and the Sting forwards were seemingly asleep.
The Sabres intensity rose and emotions were running off the scale.
The game was end-to-end and very physical with the teams trying to exert superiority.
As the seconds ticked by it was the Sting who resumed control and scored three goals in the final 10 minutes to secure victory 8-2 with hat-trick goals coming from Owen Lawton and Charlie Saunders. Sting man-of-the-Match was Joe Deakin.