Phoenix still cannot buy a league win

Sunday, 9th November 2014

Bracknell Bees 3 - Manchester Phoenix 1

Phoenix scorer: Michal Psurny

J Davidson sponsored “Men of Iron”, Manchester Phoenix, went down to another disappointing defeat in Berkshire on Saturday night. Despite dominating the home side for much of the game, their inability to convert chances again cost them dear as the points stayed down south.

Phoenix started the game with some fine attacking play, pinning the Bees back in their own zone for much of the early stages. Alex Mettam in the Bees net was called on early to keep his goal intact and a couple of fine saves early on was an indication of a match winning performance for the Bracknell keeper. Pressure told on 9.58 with a goal from Czech sniper Michal Psurny. Picking the puck up on the left wing in the neutral zone, he attacked the Bees’ rearguard and cut across the front of the net, and working a give and go with Adam Walker, finding the net to give the visitors a well deserved lead. Bracknell were creating chances on the break and the ever dangerous Lukas Smital went close, bringing out a good save from Stephen Fone.

Despite outshooting Bracknell in the period, the teams went to the first break even at 1-1. With Luke Boothroyd sitting in the box on a dubious high stick call, James Galazzi deflected a Radek Hubacek shot high past Stephen Fone for the equaliser. 

Bracknell were better organised in the second period, however Phoenix again created more chances but their profligacy in front of the net was to cost them dearly as the Bees took the lead on 27.31 with a Lukas Smital goal. The game boiled over a tad at the half way mark when Bees forward Lewis Turner and Phoenix defender Joe Graham dropped the gloves to sort out a dispute near the Phoenix goal. After a bit of dancing on ice, Graham got the upper hand and was well ahead when Turner used an UFC move to take his opponent to the ice. End of two periods and Bees had an unlikely 2-1 lead.

Phoenix continued to press the Bees in the third but the home side also had their chances and a good performance by Stephen Fone kept his net intact, making two or three excellent stops. Mettam at the other end was having a good game as the Phoenix forwards shot from all angles. Bracknell put the game to bed on 53.21 when Radek Hubacek seemed to have an age and a day to force the puck past Fone for 3-1. Phoenix had another couple of power play chances in the last 4 minutes but more misfiring in front of goal saw the home side closing the game out for a gutsy, hard worked victory

A disappointed Coach Hand said after the game: “We have to find a way to convert our chances. You do not win games by scoring 1 goal out of 45 shots. Credit to Bracknell, they worked hard and took their chances. We remain positive as a unit and we will work this out and get a run going. We are a good side and just need to start converting our chances and the wins will come.”