With former Elite League brawler Jeremy Cornish at the helm, the Raiders arrived in Kent with a reputation for the physical and the gloves were off within three minutes as Dynamos’ blue liner Ryan Giles elected to be his dance partner. As favourite for the fight, Cornish landed the majority of the blows but Giles stood firm, making contact with a number of punches before the officials separated the pair.
When play restarted the momentum was then with the Dynamos and they took the lead as Callum Best dispatched a loose puck beyond Liam McAllister at his near post for the 1-0 edge. A hooking call on Niall Bound presented the hosts with the opportunity to double their advantage and they took control when Nicky Lewis’ diagonal pass towards the far post from deep left was swept high into the net by an on rushing Ryan Ellis from the edge of the crease.
The Raiders would halve the deficit ahead of the break though as Arran Strawson fired beyond Andy Moffat from close left to leave his team just 2-1 behind with twenty minutes played.
After an action packed opening frame, the second period was timid in comparison but the Dynamos claimed the only goal of the spell with a strike 19 seconds from time. Justin Noble found Callum Best all alone between the faceoff circles and the forward doubled his personal tally for the evening by lashing beyond the reach of Liam McAllitster for 3-1.
The final frame would then also only boast one goal and, again, it was the hosts who tallied to stretch their lead to four. Just under midway through, Callum Fowler’s drive from a central position was given up for the rebound and an on-rushing Michael Timms followed up to claim his first strike since returning from the knee surgery that has seen him miss much of the campaign. Timms’ second of the campaign saw the Dynamos eventually record a 4-1 victory with the Raiders unable to find a way beyond an in-form Andy Moffat when they did push forward.
So it was a return to winning ways for the hosts who looked to have the edge over their opponents for much of the night. The reshuffled forward lines proved successful up the ice whilst an excellent performance from Andy Moffat between the pipes thwarted the Raiders whenever they did look threatening. For preventing all but one of 43 shots on net, Moffat was selected as man of the match for the Dynamos whilst Arran Strawson took the honours for the visitors.
From here the team now prepare for the much anticipated rematch with the Cardiff ENL Devils on home ice next Saturday with faceoff at the usual time of 5.15pm.
Picture by David Trevallion