THE Bespoke Guardians Swindon Wildcats recorded consecutive victories for only the second time in 2022 last weekend on their way to delaying the Telford Tigers’ NIHL National League title party.

Swindon edged past the league leaders at home on Saturday night before recording a slightly more comfortable two points away at The Bees on Sunday.

The results saw the Cats maintain their grip on second place in the National League with just four games of the regular season left.

On Saturday night, Telford knew they only needed to beat Swindon to be crowned champions, but they made the worst possible start when Jack Goodchild calmly finished one-on-one past Brad Day at 4:33.

At 9:35, Swindon doubled their advantage through a well-worked powerplay goal. Eddie Bebris and Chris Jones combined before Emil Svec fired a rocket of an effort past Day.

Early in the middle stanza, the Tigers reduced the lead to a single goal when Austin Mitchell-King was able to tip a Corey Goodison shot high above Renny Marr to make at 24:10.

The two best teams in the division traded blows thereafter, but the scoring would not increase until time expired, and Swindon took a huge step towards securing second place while preventing Telford from lifting the league for at least another week.

On Sunday, Aaron Nell’s men were out-shot 29-25 but still came away 5-3 winners in Slough.

At the end of the first period, it was the Bees who held the narrow advantage when Juha Lindgren was able to slide the puck under Renny Marr at 09:58.

Early in the middle period, the Cats were able to tie the game up through Nell after a two-on-one breakaway with Jack Goodchild initially looked like it would come to nothing. But the young Brit slid the puck back across the crease for Nell to fire home and make it 1-1 at 23:28.

Inside the final few minutes of the second period, Swindon scored twice more on a powerplay. Nell added his second when the Bees were down two players before Sam Bullas struck with 40 seconds remaining and the Wildcats holding a five-on-four advantage.

In the final period, goals from Svec and Chris Jones pushed Swindon into a 5-1 lead before two late replies from Ryan Webb and Josh Martin made it a nervy final five minutes.

But the Wildcats held on to claim four points across the weekend and head into the penultimate round of fixtures with a firm grip on second place.