Ice Hockey: Flyers are held up by Devils

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Nottingham Panthers, receiving a standing ovation from a 3,000 crowd after their Benson and Hedges Cup win, responded with a 14-2 win against Whitley Warriors to remain top of the Premier Division, six points ahead of Fife Flyers, who have played three more games.

Fife welcomed Cardiff Devils and Durham Wasps over the weekend and, at one stage, looked like losing in the match against the Devils. Cardiff were 4-2 up after the first period with Doug McEwen contributing two power play goals. But Flyers replied with three unanswered goals to lead 5-4 in the second period.

The Devils, however, hit back through that man McEwen, who tied the game at 5-5 with his fourth goal 11 minutes from time. Both sides went all out for the winning goal but Steve Lyle, who had taken over from Jason Woods in Devils' goal, and John McCrone for Fife kept out all comers.

Durham Wasps, who had had trouble beating the basement club, Bracknell Bees, 4-3, held Flyers to just a one-goal lead, at 5-4, by the end of the second period on Sunday. But in the final period Flyers ran out 9-6 winners and if Stephen Foster had not been in such good form for Wasps, the margin would have been more emphatic.

Emphatic was the word for Paisley Pirates' 15-4 victory over the division one leaders, Telford Tigers, whose only other defeat of the season was in October. Telford took a 2-0 lead after six minutes, but Alex Koulikov levelled the scores.

Halfway through the period, with Pirates leading 6-3, Tigers' Graham Garden and Norman Pirmington were given five minutes plus game penalties for slashing and butt ending and in the ensuing five-on-three play, Pirates scored five power play goals in three minutes to go 11-3 up. Victory, after that, was a formality.

BRITISH LEAGUE Premier Division (Saturday): Fife 5, Cardiff 5; Durham 4, Bracknell 3; Humberside 7, Peterborough 5; Nottingham 14, Whitely 2; Sheffield 6, Edinburgh 6. (Sunday): Fife 9, Durham 6; Edinburgh 4, Cardiff 6; Whitley 4, Sheffield 6; Humberside19, Bas- 3; Peterborough 12, Bracknell 0. First Division (Saturday): Trafford 4, Paisley 8; Teesside 13, Blackburn 17; Telford 15, Lee Valley 7; Swindon 15, Dumfries 5; Guildford 4, Solihull 4. (Sunday): Paisley 15, Telford 4; Slough 14, Swindon 4; Medway 8, Solihull 5; Lee Valley 5, Teesside 8; Chelmsford 5, Dumfries 5; Guildford 4, Trafford 4.

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