ICE HOCKEY : Jets jump to title with double

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The Independent Online
ISlough Jets are the First Division champions and they took the title in style, winning two road games, the second against second-placed Paisley Pirates, writes Steve Pinder.

Jets' first game, against Dumfries Vikings, was tied 3-3 after the first period but then Jets scored seven without reply for a 10-4 win. Paisley Pirates should have been a tougher test but they led only once, through John Yidd after four minutes, and Kel Land hardly helped their hopes three minutes later, earning a penalty for roughing. Derek Higdon scored the power-play equaliser and Darren Zinger made it 2-1 to Jets at the end of the first.

The second period saw the sides live up to their placing, as they traded goals until, with two minutes to go, Danny Gratton put daylight between the teams, Jets ending the period 6-4 ahead. Joe Stefan's goal was the only one of the third for the 7-4 result. Jets will face the bottom club of the Premier Division in the promotion/relegation play-offs, with Bracknell Bees currently enjoying that dubious honour, although a 10-7 beating of Humberside Hawks after being 3-0 down gave them slight cause for celebration as well.

In the premier title race, Nottingham Panthers and Sheffield Steelers both have 58 points but Panthers have a game in hand. Cardiff Devils could have closed the gap but for falling to an improving Durham Wasps.