Steeldogs off to a winning start
All eyes were on South Yorkshire today as the National Division got underway with a Yorkshire rivalry about to begin with the Bradfield Brewery Sheffield Steeldogs and the newest team in the league, Leeds Chiefs.
A great travelling support arrived to give the Chiefs a noisy welcome and vocal support throughout the game. Fans got behind the Chiefs from Manchester, Billingham, Blackburn and of course throughout West Yorkshire. The excitement and anticipation before they stepped out onto the ice was tangible.
The puck dropped and the game was underway with both teams loosening up, lines getting to know each other and some scrappy play at both ends. Chances were limited as the defences were quick to tidy up in their own zones. Neither netminder broke a sweat as they saw the puck as clear as day in the opening twenty minutes. 0-0 at the end of the period.
The second saw Leeds grab the game by the horns and get the first goal, Radek Meidl will be a name you’ll read time and time again throughout the year, but he will be remembered as the first goal scorer for the Chiefs. This prompted the Steeldogs into injecting a little more pace into the game, but clear cut scoring chances were still at a premium and the defences were stepping up to the mark and limiting the forwards to long distances or tight angles. It took until the final minute of the second for the Dogs to level as Kieran Brown dispatched a short hander, assisted by a precise Nathan Salem feed, sending the teams in at 1-1.
The final period was going to be another tense twenty minutes of hockey. The visitors were working hard to get the second goal but it was Nathan Salem who scored the second goal for the Dogs. With the bit between their teeth and again while a man short due to a penalty the Dogs pushed on; Kieran Brown netted another short hander, assisted Ben Morgan. With a 3-1 lead Sheffield kept the game in their hands. Despite never giving up, it was just a little too much to ask from the Chiefs who will curse the goal frames at iceSheffield for denying them more goals.
Final Score: Sheffield Steeldogs 3-1 Leeds Chiefs
Man of the Match awards were presented to Radek Meidl and Kieran Brown.
📸 Pete Best and Cerys Molloy
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