THE Bespoke Guardians Swindon Wildcats tough spell continued last weekend with defeats at the hands of Milton Keynes Lightning and Sheffield Steeldogs.

Friday night’s 6-2 defeat at MK and Saturday evening’s 6-4 reverse in Sheffield means Swindon’s title hopes are probably over for another year, but Nell’s men must finish strongly to have a chance in the play-offs.

In the opening game, the Wildcats conceded after just 14 seconds when Adam Laishram whipped the puck home. Callum Field poked in for MK at 5:44, and Bobby Chamberlain netted a little over a minute later to pile the misery on Aaron Nell’s men.

Following an early Wildcats time-out, Chamberlain scored again at 10:01 to ensure any comeback would have to be an outstanding one.

Balint Pakozdi struck the puck into the top corner 40 seconds into the second period to briefly raise hopes of said comeback, but the Lightning scrapped to prevent any further goals prior to the third period.

But when Emil Svec pounced on a loose puck in the crease to halve the deficit four minutes later, those dreams began to creep into view.

However, the hope was short-lived, as at 46:45 Sean Norris raced through on goal to score low past Marr and extend the lead back to three.

As the final period was ending, MK were able to add a sixth goal when Tim Wallace fired the puck into the empty net to seal the 6-2 win.

Hopeful of taking at least two points from the weekend, Swindon once again started poorly when Matt Bissonnette used a nice screen to fire the puck past Renny Marr at 07:05.

The game didn’t see another goal until the midway point of the second period, when Tomasz Malasinski ripped the puck past Zimozdra on the powerplay at 31:50.

However, much like the night before, the momentum was only with Swindon for a short time when Lee Bonner scored a lovely goal at 34:09.

The Wildcats squared the game up at two shortly into the final period through Pakozdi, and they subsequently took the lead after Svec buried the puck from short range – causing the crowd at the Link Centre to erupt with joy.

Sam Towner equalised for Sheffield, only for Eddie Bebris to re-establish the Wildcats’ advantage by sliding the puck under a sliding Zimozdra with around 10 to play.

But unfortunately, three further goals from the Steeldogs’ Jason Hewitt, Bissonnette, and Towner allowed the visitors to run away with the points while the Cats remained empty-handed once again.