Lynx fight hard but lose to Kestrels 3-1
The Lynx travelled to Kirkcaldy on Saturday with an slim outside chance of still being in the hunt for the SNL title against one of the teams in the driving seat
The task was formidable against a very good Kirkcaldy team with an excellent blend of experienced players and talented youths who last weekend lost narrowly to league leaders Dundee Comets for only their second loss of the season.
After handing out a resounding 5-0 defeat to the Kestrels early in the season, with a full squad the Lynx would have been confident of competing for a win this weekend but a combination of suspensions, injury and work commitments saw them travel to Kirkcaldy with a very short bench that necessitated Coach Owen Reynolds getting stripped for the game. This put a completely different perspective on the fixture and looked like it would be a very difficult challenge to compete with a very fast and talented Kirkcaldy team.
However, last week against the Tigers the Lynx showed that even with a very short bench they still have a talented pool of players. Reynolds has instilled a good work ethic in this squad and this contributed to a good 3-1 win against the Tigers.
This attitude continued this week with the Lynx competing hard right from the first face off. A very entertaining first period saw both sides create chances and playing some excellent hockey. Both net minders were on great form and kept the first period scoreless.
The second period was just as intense and the Lynx did well to kill 2 penalties. However, the pace of the game started to take its toll on the short benched Lynx and deadlock was finally broken by the Kestrels 10 min inside the first period to take the lead 1-0 with a goal from Scott Jamieson. Despite beginning to show signs of fatigue the Lynx were by no means out of it and 3 minutes later #15 Iain Malcolm’s cute redirection in front of the net from a shot from the point by #6 Craig Findlay tied the game.
Both sides continued to have good chances to take the lead but both net minders were superb in thwarting
chances. The Kestrels did finally manage to put the puck in the back of the net, however, it was just after the whistle blew to end the period, so it stayed tied 1-1 at the end of the second.
The third period continued to be a very entertaining affair with both teams playing good hockey and creating opportunities. The Lynx managed to effectively kill a further 2 Kirkcaldy power-plays but were now looking very tired. The Lynx then had a PP opportunity for themselves but the Kestrels killed the penalty effectively and soon after managed to take the lead with 12 minutes remaining with a goal from Allan Anderson.
The game continued its familiar pattern and the Lynx looked to have galvanised what remaining fitness they had to pile on the pressure and equalise with a goal by #56 Willets Elliot to make it 2-2 with 10 minutes remaining. Then, in confusing circumstances the officials then decided to award an retrospective penalty on #27 Calum MacEachran for slashing that happened 30 seconds before the goal. This nullified the goal and resulted in MacEachran being ejected form the game and the Lynx given a 5 minute penalty.
The players did well to withstand the relentless pressure from the Kestrels during this PP and Aaron Thomson had a chance to tie the game with short handed breakaway but was unfortunately thwarted by the Kestrels net-minder. Within seconds, the Kestrels were at back up the pad and a well worked goal saw Scott Jamieson score his second the night to make it 3-1 and effectively clinch the game. The Lynx still had 2.30 of the 5 min penalty to kill and to their credit kept fighting and pressing hard for the final 5 minutes of the game.
This was a defeat for the Lynx but also a great team performance who showed dup big time in difficult circumstances to run Kirkcaldy very close. Every single one of the Lynx Players left nothing on that pad and the effort and commitment were superb They were very unlucky not to come away with anything from what was a fantastic game of hockey.
#15 Malcolm 1+0
#6 Findlay 0+1
MOM #35 Chalmers