Ice Hockey: Knights' double deflating for Storm

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The Independent Online
THE SUPERLEAGUE leaders, London Knights, staged their second perfect dress rehearsal on Sunday for next month's Benson and Hedges Cup final.

After Saturday's 5-2 win over Manchester Storm at the MEN Arena, Knights followed up with a 4-2 victory against coach Kurt Kleinendorst's side on their home ice.

Knights are now three points clear at the top of the table after stretching their winning run to six matches, while the out-of-form Storm have now lost five of their last six league games.

The reigning champions were 4-0 down before the midway point of the game as London showed supreme confidence. Ryan Duthie and Mike Ware were on the scoresheet in the opening period, before Neal Martin and Jeff Hoad doubled London's advantage. Kelly Askew netted twice to give Manchester hope going into the last 20 minutes, but the Knights held on.

Ayr Scottish Eagles have moved up to fifth place following a 3-1 victory at Centrum over Cardiff Devils, who drop to seventh. The previous two games between these teams this season had ended in draws, but there was little chance of the hat-trick as Eagles sailed into a 3-0 lead in a penalty- strewn match. Two powerplay goals from their captain, Shawn Byram, in the first period was followed by a marker from Jamie Steer in the second, with Merv Priest scoring a scrappy consolation.

In the British National League, Guildford Flames maintained their lead at the top with a 5-4 win at Hull Thunder. The Flames have two games in hand over the Peterborough Pirates, who are also on 20 points after a comprehensive 10-2 away win over Paisley Pirates.

Slough Jets are still third after a 5-4 away win over Solihull Blaze, while Fife Flyers became the highest-placed Scottish club when they beat their oldest and closest rivals Edinburgh Capitals 6-1 away for their sixth league win in a row.

Basingstoke Bison came from behind to beat the bottom club, Milton Keynes Kings, 2-1.

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