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- Milton Keynes 3-1 Swindon Wildcats (result)
- Lightning scorers: Leigh Jamieson, Blaz Emersic (2)
- Wildcats scorer: Aaron Nell
- Swindon miss out on fourth straight win
- Get involved using wildcatslive
- Reporting by NED PAYNE
Thank you for joining me. Ice Hockey Live will return soon.
Top five will not be achieved this weekend but there's plenty of games left in the season.
I have to say I think MK deserved it. They had Swindon's number. Again.
Shame about the loss but you can't win them all. Just got to put it behind us and look forward to tomorrow instead! #wildcatslive— @Thomas_Graham92 18 January 2014
Wildcats' man of the match is Nell.
Milton Keynes 3 Wildcats 1.
GOAL! Milton Keynes 3 Wildcats 1, 59.53
Lyle is pulled and Emersic has the simple task of scooting down the left wing, diving inside and shooting into the net. Easy as you like.
Nell tries a slapshot from behind the blueline but Wall gloves easily. 1.33 left.
MK happy to run the clock down with a man advantage.
There are two and a half minutes left. One goal feels like a mountain right now.
Lyle did well to keep out a puck that nearly deflected in off Whitfield.
FOUR ON FOUR
Hoog penalised with a 5+game for a check to the head.
Jamieson called for tripping.
#wildcatslive Let's hope that the luck we wished them before they left comes into play. Bring down the Thunder Cats!!!!— @marktsstarr 18 January 2014
Big slapshot from range by Zatopek which Lyle blocks with his left pad.
Six minutes to go. Still MK lead 2-1.
Pile-up in front of the net and Nell is there. Unfortunately, so is Wall. He has been very good tonight.
Swindon need to start thinking about gambling fairly soon.
Over from Nell. That was a half-decent chance.
MK looking by far the more likely at this stage.
A smidge over eight minutes left.
Ok enough is enough!! Score now please Cats!! 1pt from OT is something at least, we can do this :-) come on you cats! #wildcatslive— @Faithangeljoy 18 January 2014
9:28pm Sat 18 Jan 14
Beginning to think you're on the bottle Ned :D
Don't be cheeky.
Lyle stops from Lukas Zatopek and then takes a whack from the MK import. Zatopek apologises.
Come on cats!!! Attack Attack Attack!! #wildcatslive— @rocketno5 18 January 2014
Cmon @SwinWildcats we need a goal #wildcatslive— @sammywilson87 18 January 2014
In situations where they don't appear likely to score, of late Swindon have managed to do just that.
Lyle is comfortable with Carlon's fizzer.
@Carsy18 Gets away with it this time.... #goalchange #Wildcatslive— @Swinedog 18 January 2014
Just over 16 minutes to play and Cats need a goal.
Correction on the first MK goal. Was scored by Jamieson, not Adam Carr.
@Thomas_Graham92 alot of teams have done alot worse at MK this year! #wildcatslive— @jackl86 18 January 2014
THIRD PERIOD UNDER WAY
And here are the players. That felt like an eternity.
I've said it before and I will say it again. I'd take OT right now.
The zamboni's work is done.
Come on you @SwinWildcats, dig deep and attack like you can #bleedred #wildcatslive— @swildcat 18 January 2014
The song Sweet Disposition has just come on. A tribute to Ryan Watt perhaps?
We're not far away from resuming.
2-1 with 20 minutes to go is not a total disaster. Big period coming up but we're still in this one! #wildcatslive— @Thomas_Graham92 18 January 2014
A deathly silence falls upon the SkyDome.
Well, Swindon will not be going top five tonight. That is a fact.
Basingstoke 5 Peterborough 4, Slough 2 Sheffield 8.
Strange period of hockey.
END OF THE SECOND PERIOD
Hoog to Nell to Taylor who shoots wide. Shame. Cracking play.
One minute left of the second period.
Yippeee Nell strikes again!! We are back in it! Come on you cats!! #wildcatslive— @Faithangeljoy 18 January 2014
Those original penalties by the way... Sandvik got two minutes for diving and Janne Jokila got two for slashing. Both Watt and McPherson got 10 minute misconduct penalties.
Even a low Kostal drive couldn't get through.
The Swindon fans think Nell scored. Side-netting I'm afraid.
8:52pm Sat 18 Jan 14
That's more like it. Come on Guys, you can do this !
Ross Green called for hooking.
BOTH TEAMS BACK TO FULL STRENGTH
Swindon goal whoop #wildcatslive— @sammywilson87 18 January 2014
GOAL! Milton Keynes 2 Wildcats 1, 32.21
Nell's slapshot squeezes through Wall and it's game on again. Sam Godfrey got an assist.
FOUR ON FOUR
After all that, Watt and one of his teammates are in the box, as are two of MK's lot. Aldridge is fuming.
This side of the game is pretty pathetic. Just get on with it.
Now Carlon is winding up Watt.
Grant McPherson drops the gloves. watt does not. In fact, he whacks McPherson's glove to the other side of the rink!
A break in play while the officials sort out some handbags.
Lets go wildcats!!! @nedpayne1 #wildcatslive— @charrabi1 18 January 2014
Cats playing very defensive tonight even sitting back on their own pp, best form of defence is offence #wildcatslive— @Dunster43 18 January 2014
Not a great couple of minutes for the Cats then. Lots of frustration evident.
Wildcats call a time out.
GOAL! Milton Keynes 2 Wildcats 0, 30.24
Swindon have a couple of chances to get the puck out but don't take them, allowing Emersic to send the puck arrowing across into the top-right corner with a lovely wristshot. Bang.
GOAL! Milton Keynes 1 Wildcats 0, 29.03
MK fly forward, Jordan Cownie zips one into the slot from the right wing and Leigh Jamieson slams high to Lyle's right. The netminder had no chance with that one. Blaz Emersic also gets an assist.
The visitors were a bit too careful for my liking on that powerplay. Should have shot earlier a couple of times.
Swindon defending on their own powerplay. Weird.
Jamieson sits for holding.
Hoog slips through a couple of challenges and finds Nell, who so nearly squeezes into the net from a narrow angle. The puck comes out off Wall's pad.
Six minutes gone in the second.
Come on @SwinWildcats, get that passion and finish the job off #wildcatslive— @swildcat 18 January 2014
Still here! Drinking tequila! Deffo gonna be hungover at the link tommorow!GO ON LADS!!!!!! #wildcatslive— @HomTopper 18 January 2014
8:28pm Sat 18 Jan 14
Come on Henri, get me a goal !!
Is Bullas still donning his full face shield? #wildcatslive— @TeenyPops 18 January 2014
Carlon's shot nearly deflects wickedly into the net but misses the left post by six inches or so.
Wish hockey had a bigger following!! #wildcatslive @nedpayne1— @jack_stagg 18 January 2014
Lyle gloves high from Jordan Cownie.
Yep still here, but the results from Splash are being announced so we are all on the edge of our seats lol #wildcatslive— @TeenyPops 18 January 2014
SECOND PERIOD UNDER WAY
There's at least three of you still with me. That's very positive.
@nedpayne1 I'm still here Ned! Sounds like a solid start for the cats, just need to put the puck in the net now #wildcatslive— @Thomas_Graham92 18 January 2014
And here are the players.
Still here! #wildcatslive— @mrsbatchelor1 18 January 2014
Come on boys!! Find some passion, attack & fighting spirit & get those shots hitting the net in the 2nd! Want those 2pts! #wildcatslive— @Faithangeljoy 18 January 2014
The players are waiting to come back on.
You've all gone a bit quiet, are you still there? #wildcatslive
Bracknell 1 Telford 4.
Although, if I was Ryan Aldridge I'd take OT right now.
Well, in summary, it's been a perfectly decent game and Swindon have protected Lyle well, but we could do with some goals to liven this up a bit.
Bracknell 1 Telford 3, Basingstoke 4 Peterborough 4, Slough 2 Sheffield 6.
Wildcats 5 Bristol Pitbulls 3.
There are 57 seconds left on Pekkarinen's penalty.
END OF THE FIRST PERIOD
Heavy slapshot from Farn is straight into Lyle's comfort zone.
Pekkarinen sits for slashing Janne Jokila as he closed in on Lyle.
One minute left in the first.
Lyle blocks well from Carlon from the right wing.
Nothing much from Cats there. Nell flicked one goalwards but it was fairly comfortable for Wall.
Nell slaloms forward and is clipped by Tom Carlon with his stick. Blatant.
Nell scoops just over the bar.
Michael Farn is all over Lyle who smothers the puck to safety. Good work from the Welshman. All came about because Alex Symonds was slow to rear to a loose puck.
No real bite to the game so far. We need a goal.
Hoog denied from the edge of the crease by Wall. Good chance.
Nearly nine minutes gone.
Why are @MKL_Official playing out of the Sky Dome? #wildcatslive @SwinWildcats— @TeenyPops 18 January 2014
Decent pressure from Wildcats these last couple of minutes. Nothing to really test Wall, though.
Lee Richardson tries a slapshot from halfway. Optimistic.
Stevie Whitfield bombs forward to try and get on the end of a Henri Sandvik pass, but ends up on his backside. Great industry, though.
In nets are Steve Wall and Stevie Lyle, by the way.
Come on you Cats - this is good practice for the play-off finals! #wildcatslive— @TeenyPops 18 January 2014
Swindon's starting line is Jonas Hoog, Floyd Taylor, Nell.
FIRST PERIOD UNDER WAY
Players being introduced.
The players are waiting patiently to step on to the rink.
Come on wildcats let's show the football team how to win away!! #wildcatslive— @rocketno5 18 January 2014
That said, Sheffield are currently 3-0 up in Slough so Wildcats would most likely have to win tonight and then beat Guildford at the Link Centre tomorrow. Not impossible, but very tough.
A GLIMPSE INTO THE FUTURE?
Time to baffle you (and possibly myself) with some conjecture. It's conceivable that having been out of the play-offs altogether a fortnight ago, Swindon could end this weekend in the top half of the EPL. Ryan Aldridge's troops are two points behind Sheffield, who only have one game this weekend, so if Wildcats get at least one more win than the Steeldogs over tonight and tomorrow then they go fifth. If the teams are level on points, Swindon will take the higher placing in the table by virtue of their superior head-to-head record.
Bracknell 0 Telford 2, Basingstoke 2 Peterborough 3, Slough 0 Sheffield 3.
If @Carsy18 scores against @SwinWildcats tonight, then he is on cleaning duty on Monday... #promise #Wildcatslive #lol— @Swinedog 18 January 2014
Wildcats 5 Bristol Pitbulls 3. Michael Stratford and Jan Melichar the latest to score for the home team.
We are around 10 minutes from face-off.
With the #STFC guys not able to wave the Swindon Sport banner right now, lets hope @SwinWildcats can pull one out the bag #Wildcatslive— @Swinedog 18 January 2014
LETS GO CATS!!!!! #wildcatslive— @HomTopper 18 January 2014
ALDRIDGE VALUES WINS OVER ENTERTAINMENT
Head coach Ryan Aldridge has admitted he is more than happy for Wildcats to bore spectators in their road games, as long as they have two points to take home at the end of the 60 minutes.
“If we play a boring game in Coventry then we’ve probably done our jobs,” said Aldridge.
“We know we have to commit to defence when we are on the road and I want us to be defensively as we were in Telford the other night, and take our chances when they come.
“Telford’s offence is so good now and we had to go in there and play a smart game. We protected Stevie (Lyle) well and they had a lot of shots from the outside and that’s the way we have to play on those big ice pads.
“Coventry is a big pad and until we made our changes, those probably suited us a bit more and we played better away than we did at home.
“Now we’ve brought in Aaron (Nell) and Jan (Kostal), we can’t start going really aggressive on the forecheck because it will end up hurting us. It’s going to be a tough weekend but it’s a weekend we can get points out of.”
Good luck Swindon Wildcats you can do it boys, I am following from Nandos in Soho ... #Wildcatslive #barmyarmy— @Ulli2311 18 January 2014
Don't forget to get your tweets in using #wildcatslive and you can also comment in the comments section below.
Good luck tonight boys!! 4 out 4 would be amazing, will be cheering from NIHL game & home!! Come on you cats! #wildcatslive— @Faithangeljoy 18 January 2014
i love Ryan watt! #wildcatslive— @mrsbatchelor1 18 January 2014
The players are leaving the ice as the warm-up comes to an end.
Shout out to the Wildcats fan a couple of rows in front of me wearing shorts tonight. It's been a while since I've seen that at a hockey game. Apart from the players of course...
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Your involvement is vital to Ice Hockey Live and we want you to let us know your thoughts on all things Wildcats-related. This can be about anything, whether it be the performances of the defencemen, Swindon's play-off prospects or simply how much you love Jan Kostal. All you have to do is use #wildcatslive on Twitter and/or tag me in (@nedpayne1) and I will endeavour to include your thoughts. You can comment before, during and after the game and you can also get your opinion off your chest in the comments section below. There is absolutely no reason not to have your say and you can be as controversial as you like (but please keep it clean).
Very little to report tonight given that the Wildcats line-up is exactly the same as it was when Swindon won 2-1 in Telford on Tuesday. Sam Smith was hoping to come back but I'm told he felt light-headed when skating at practice on Thursday, so the forward will sit out proceedings.
Hopefully a poll will appear below in the next minute or so... get voting!
Wildcats 3 Bristol Pitbulls 2. Goalscorers Prince, Stratford and Taylor.
Good evening from the SkyDome Arena in Coventry where Swindon Wildcats will tonight aim to beat Milton Keynes Lightning for the first time this season. There have been three failed attempts so far but confidence is flowing after the Wildcats clocked up three straight wins in the last week, their best run of 2013/14 to date. Lots coming your way over the next few hours.