SWINDON Wildcats suffered a devastating blow in their quest to poach National League’s top spot from Telford Tigers this weekend as they fell to narrow defeats against Bracknell Bees and Peterborough Phantoms.

Hosting Bracknell on Saturday night, Wildcats never really clicked on home ice and found themselves three goals down at the end of the first period – Doughty, Malinik and Gabai notched the visitors’ three goals.

Ryan Webb added a fourth for Bracknell at 20.23, before Chris Jones pulled a goal back for Aaron Nell’s roster only 19 seconds later.

Hopes of completing a comeback were quickly quashed, though, as Josh Martin stuck Bees’ fifth.

Tyler VanKleef and Edgars Bebris notched Cats’ second and third goals. And when Sam Bullas added a fourth at 41.25 the game was suddenly for the taking.

Bracknell played a smart game, and confirmed their victory when an empty net goal was registered late in the third.

Reflecting on Saturday night, Nell said: “We put ourselves in too much of a hole, it’s frustrating.

“We did enough to pick up a point, but it was two points we didn’t need to lose. We had chances in the third period, but couldn’t score.

“With Renny (Marr) out, we would’ve taken two points this weekend. It was just one of those nights, three or four bad minutes cost us.”

Cats’ weekend went from bad to worse when Peterborough landed a 7-6 victory on Sunday night in a game that ebbed and flowed.

Phantoms led 6-5 at the end of the second and quickly made it 7-5 once play resumed through Nathan Pollard.

Again, Wildcats netted mid-way through the third to ignite hope. But Phantoms closed the game out well to ensure Cats suffered another loss.