League defeat, cup win for Chieftains

First published in Local Sport

It was a difficult weekend for Chelmsford Chieftains as they struggled on the small ice surface on the Isle of Wight against an improving Wightlink team.

It was never going to be easy adapting the fast free-flowing game the team are used to in the condensed space and so it told.

The team battled hard throughout but ultimately went down to a disputed goal from Craig Tribe when the home side clearly had 6 men on the ice, but the officials hadn’t noticed and the goal stood. Ben Clements had a sterling performance in the nets and other than the goal, kept a good account of himself and proved why he is arguably the most consistent netminder in the league.

On Sunday, and it was a different story as the Chieftains ran in 5 unanswered goals in a rout of the Raiders.

Player-coach Gary Clarke and Julius Sinkovic both netted in the first period and then Sinkovic scored again along with Danny Hammond in the second to make the scoreline 4-0 after 40mins of hockey.

The main talking point of the period will be the 3 set-tos that went on between Grant Bartlett and Nick Compton in which the Chelmsford youngster won.

Sinkovic and Richard Facey squared up, but Facey declined to go. Alex Green and Jeremy Cornish looked set to go, but nothing doing in the end and Cornish ended up skating away looking unhappy at not fighting.

Captain Danny Wright then made it 5-0 in the final session of the game while Clements completed his shutout and rounded out a good weekend for the Chelmsford stopper.

Next week the Chieftains head to Invicta in the league on Sunday in what has become a must-win game for the Riverside team as bitter rivals Romford Raiders have taken over top spot in the league and the Chelmsford side will be desperate to take it back.

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