EPL: Hull Pirates and Sheffield Steeldogs end weekend on winning high

Hull Pirates celebrate one of their strikes against Guildford Flames. Picture courtesy of Hull Pirates.

Hull Pirates celebrate one of their strikes against Guildford Flames. Picture courtesy of Hull Pirates.

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ANDREJ THEMAR produced a memorable four-goal night to earn Hull Pirates a swift revenge win over English Premier League rivals Guildford Flames.

The 28-year-old Slovakian was on blistering form, his final goal of the night hauling his team level with the visitors before two goals in the space of a minute from Nathan Salem and player-coach Dominic Osman sealed a stirring comeback on a fiesty night at Hull Ice Arena.

Dominic Osman: Scored vital third-period goal to seal 6-4 win over Guildford. Picture: Arthur Foster.

Dominic Osman: Scored vital third-period goal to seal 6-4 win over Guildford. Picture: Arthur Foster.

The win restored Hull to third place in the standings and allowed them to quickly get over a 6-4 defeat on the road at Swindon Wildcats the night before.

Sheffield Steeldogs enjoyed a three-point weekend, first suffering a 5-4 reverse in a shoot-out at home to Telford Tigers before rebounding with a 4-3 triumph at Bracknell Bees 24 hours later.

It was a hat-trick from star forward Arnoldas Bosas that was largely responsible for getting Sheffield a point against Telford, the home side taking a two-goal lead through the Lithuanian before two 38th-minute strikes from Doug Clarkson and Jason Silverthorn pulled the Tigers level.

Bosas restored his side’s lead at 47.15, although that only lasted 33 seconds before Michal Satek hauled the visitors level again, with Milan Kolena then putting them ahead for the first time 32 seconds later.

And while Bosas had proved the star turn for Greg Wood’s side, it was teenager Liam Kirk who produced the biggest cheer of the night levelling with just 92 seconds left on the clock to take the game into overtime and then penalties which was won controversially by a penalty shot from former Hull Stingrays forward, Matty Davies.

The Steeldogs dominated the opening exchanges at Bracknell and were 4-1 ahead before the halfway point through strikes from Bosas and Andrew Hirst together with a double from Donatas Kumeliauskas, Harvey Stead replying with an 18th- minute powerplay strike for the Bees.

But James Galazzi and Luka Basic both struck before the end of the second to ensure it was a nervous final period for the visitors, with James Hadfield turning away 13 shots to secure a three-point weekend.

In a game of fluctuating fortunes in East Yorkshire on Sunday, Hull struck the first blow through Themar with less than two minutes on the clock before Jens Eriksson levelled at 3.18.

Themar against found a way past Joonas Kuusela at 8.44 and that is how it stayed for just 10 minutes until Tom Duggan got his first of the night on the powerplay, adding a second just over three minutes into the second. It was that man Themar who calmed home fans’ nerves at 34.14 with a powerplay effort, his joy being short-lived, however, when former Hull Stingrays; defenceman Kevin Phillips pounced to restore the visitors’ lead just under two minutes later.

Themar then struck his second powerplay of the night just 26 seconds into the third, with Salem’s strike at 46.34 being followed by Osman’s effort just 21 seconds later.

On Saturday, two goals from Jason Hewitt and strikes from Josh Gent and Jaroslav Sarsok couldn’t prevent defeat at Swindon for the Pirates, the biggest damage being caused in the final 10 minutes when the Wildcats’ Aaron Nell added three goals to his fourth-minute opener. Sarsok’s powerplay strike at 57.08 was too little, too late.

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