In game one, the Sukhumvit Spitfires grabbed the early lead and held on to it throughout the game. But Hooters Nana scored with five minutes left to make it 5-4. And then they pulled their goalie with 90 seconds to go, and Michael White tied it with a 1:08 left on the clock. But the Spitfires Donny “the Magician” Kerfoot pulled some rabbits out of his hat, dipsy-doodling and zig-zagging his way down the ice scoring his third goal of the game with 30 seconds left—before potting an empty-netter a few seconds later to give Sukhumvit a 7-5 victory.
Kerfoot, who earned Rolling Stone Pizza player of the game honours for the second time this year, set a SHL record for most goals (4) and points (6) in a game. The previous record was three goals and five points set by SC-Titanium’s Mike Wilson a couple weeks back. Andy Brine led Hooters Nana on the night with a goal and an assist.
Something you won’t find on the score sheet: two huge open ice hits, unfortunately by players from the same teams. Andy Brine of Hooters Nana took out teammate Teerapol “La” Chamnanrattanakul and Sukhumvit’s Simon Rindlisbacher left linemate David Boere bloody with a nasty 15-stitch eyebrow cut that forced him out of the game.
Hooters Nana was using their fifth goalie of the year, as Pirapong “Juiz” Lertitsiri, the Nakaraj goalie in the BIHL, made his debut for them stopping 24 of the 31 shots he faced, while Lance Parker extended his winning streak to five games in the Spitfires net stopping 23 of the 28 pucks he faced.
The second game was very close as Sport Corner-Titanium bounced back from last week’s loss, winning a squeaker over AWARE 4-3. A magnanimous decision by acting AWARE captain Christian Olofsson at the beginning of the game tilted the game in S-C Titanium’s favour. A top-end S-C Titanium substitute failed to show but Christian allowed one of his subs, Alex Gilbert, to switch sides giving each team10 skaters. This tilted the defensive-corps-battle in favor of the league-leading squad but also created an exciting and close game. Both teams attacked in waves and chances abounded at both ends as the action raged back and forth from one side of the ice to the other.
Aware has had an issue all season with giving up the first goal, and SC-T took advantage just 30 seconds into this game as Alexander Dushin scored a soft goal from the boards at the blue line that somehow found its way in. Brandon Vick replied for AWARE and then Bill Bredesen, who has been battling injury issues all year, scored to put Aware up 2-1 ahead as he completed the wraparound, banging the puck in off of Gabor Toth’s pads in acrobatic fashion while lying on his stomach from behind the net. But SC-Titanium answered right back when Jari Eerikainen scored. Then Henrik Olofsson, subbing for captain Patrik Lundmark, who is coaching the Thai National Team at the Asian Winter Games in Sapporo, put Aware up again 3-2 as he broke in on a breakaway, and then froze the goalie with a wicked shot that made both the goalpost and the crossbar sing before catching the net behind a stunned Gabor Toth (Henrik, a fitness guru by profession, is one of the best players in Southeast Asia, and was a key part of the Johnny Oduya Flying Farang-led Land of Smiles championship team a few years back. Unfortunately, work commitments prevent him from being a full-time SHL player).
SC-Titanium showed character and evened the score just before the second period was over, as substitute Ben Dolgin-Gardner batted in a rebound in front of the net. Acting SC-Titanium captain Mike Wilson sealed the deal when he was allowed to skate in from the boards and pick the corner for the game winner. Both teams did a great job on the penalty kill throughout the game.
Jari Eerikainen, was the Rolling Stone Pizza player of the game as he had a “monster” performance for SC Titanium and really carried his team on his shoulders; he seemed to play every shift and was just as effective on D as he was offensively, netting a goal and two assists on the night.
Gabor Toth had a very successful weekend as Saturday he backstopped the Thai Stix to the Mekong Cup, Southeast Asia’s regional ball-hockey championship.
Week thirteen SHL action continues on Sunday February 26th at “the Rink”, Central Grand Rama 9, with the same match-ups taking place as AWARE takes on SC-Titanium at 8:30 and the Sukhumvit Spitfires battle Hooters Nana at 9:30pm..
For more information on the SHL check out Dom Dumais great podcasts and interviews with SHL players.