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Ice hockey: Flintshire Freeze hold third spot in first of double trip to Fylde Flyers

AS the EIHA North Two season works toward its climax, the Flintshire Freeze hung on to third place with a battling 9-7 victory at Fylde Flyers.

The Lancashire side put up a good fight on their home pad but the Freeze had enough in the tank to come out victorious.

An early penalty for Gary Dixon however left the visitors short-handed which was when the Flyers took the lead.

Within three minutes Ken Williams had restored parity for Flintshire and 12 seconds later Ben Simister put the Freeze in the driving seat.

The Flyers drew level for just 10 seconds on seven minutes as Gavin Austin restored the Freeze lead.

On the quarter-hour Fylde got back on terms and this time the Freeze had to wait until they had the numerical advantage, courtesy of a delay penalty for time wasting, to equalise.

Leading scorer James Parsons struck the first of his hat-trick to send the Freeze into the break with a slender one-point advantage.

The second period saw the home side really dig in and try to stop the Freeze playing.

Fouls, however, did give the Flintshire outfit a power play they took advantage of, Dixon getting himself on the scoresheet.

Fylde struck two quick-fire goals to level things up but the Freeze soon got their noses in front again as Parsons hit goal number two.

Steve Fellows opened the scoring in the fourth for the Freeze after five minutes and Marc Lovell extended the lead before Parsons polished off his treble and the match.

Fylde scored twice late on for a nervy couple of minutes but the Freeze secured a well deserved win to keep third-place rivals Hull Stingrays at bay.

The Freeze return to Fylde a week on Saturday for their penultimate game of the season.

James Parsons is way out in front as the Flintshire Freeze top scorer for 2011/12 as the season approaches its climax.

He has so far scored 41 goals and set up a further 20, despite accruing 92 penalty minutes.

Next in line is Simon Furnival who has scored 28 goals and created 16 assists while posting 89 penalty minutes and Andrew Chappell is currently third having scored 14 goals, made 14 goals and clocked up 14 penalty minutes.

Between the pipes Matty Compton has been the Freeze’s preferred netminder, conceding just 67 goals from 392 shots faced in 617 minutes.