Solihull Barons 8 Sutton Sting 5
SOME 400 spectators turned out for this league win on Sunday, played in memoriam of popular Barons off-ice team member Steve Perks, who passed away suddenly on January 13.
The national anthem was followed by a minute’s applause for him. Steve’s son Rob plays in defence for the Barons, and was named man of the match.
The team has won 14 and drawn one of their 15 league games this season, and lead the league by nine points with nine games left to play. Sutton Sting, though, are the in-form side of the moment.
Solihull went in front when Lui Brindle scored within 30 seconds of the start. Rob Eley doubled the lead in the 9th minute, and Sutton pulled a goal back in the 17th.
The Barons pulled further ahead on 26 minutes when Richard Slater scored the first of his two goals; it was end-to-end hockey. Dean Tonks was next on the scoresheet, but Sutton scored a power play three minutes before the end of the second period, making it 4-3.
Slater scored his second within 16 seconds of the start of the final period, and the lead was increased six minutes later when the league’s top goalscorer Tonks scored his second. Three minutes later Andy Ayers scored the Barons’ seventh.
Shortly after that goal the game became very heated with several fights breaking out. A Barons player and two Sutton players were ejected. The Barons went off the boil for a short period and allowed Sutton to score two quick goals. Barons captain Eley came up with a big goal for a final score of 8-5.
The Barons’ next home match is against Bradford Bulldogs, Sunday, February 6 (face off 6pm)