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Ice hockey: Flintshire Freeze bring Bradford Bulldogs to heel

Flintshire Freeze 9Bradford Bulldogs 4

VISITING Bradford brought a small squad of only 10 men and a goalie to avenge the Freeze’s 4-1 victory against them in ENIHL North B in September, but it was the hosts who were top dogs in the end.

Indeed, the Bulldogs had barely drawn breath at Deeside Ice Rink when Chris Jones opened the scoring after only 23 seconds for the hosts.

James Parsons quickly followed up with Freeze’s second as the in-form side ran rings around the Bradford defence.

But the Bulldogs didn’t give up and Andrew Brown scored from a slapshot from behind the blue line to get them on the scoreboard after 13 minutes.

Jones though popped up with his second before Si Furnival converted his own rebound off the Bulldogs netminder for the Freeze’s fourth.

The second period saw the Freeze knuckle down to business Furnival firing a whizzing a shot across the crease for a goal in off the bottom of the far post during an advantage play.

The Freeze opened the third period with another early goal – this time within 53 seconds – with a nicely worked goal for Parsons assisted by Alex Parry and Mike Jones. But Bradford answered with an unassisted powerplay goal for Aaron Dad with Freeze down to four men as Callum Ruddick sat out a tripping penalty.

Back to full strength and with a change of goalie giving Dan Ryall a stint between the posts, Jones secured his hat trick, cracking another one into the top of the net. The Bulldogs’ Brown whacked in a shot from the blue line to make the score 7-3.

Although Freeze went down to four again they kept up the pressure and it paid off with a short-handed goal for joint head coach Marc Lovell before Jones added his fourth.

For the second Sunday on the trot, Freeze let their opponents sneak in the final goal of the match in the dying seconds however the result was not in question.

Freeze’s next two weekends are on the road at Sheffield Spartans (Northern League) on Saturday and Solihull Barons (ENIHL North Two) on Sunday before they go to Fife and Solway (Northern League) on November 6 before returning to home action against the Barons on November 14.