Lightning’s hopes of catching the top three teams in the English Premier League suffered a setback at the weekend when they again were unable to take maximum points from their encounters.
Although they were able to see off Swindon Wildcats by a 3-1 margin on Saturday – albeit with the deciding goal not coming until seven seconds from the buzzer – they endured a 5-2 reverse at Telford Tigers the following day.
Both teams were not at their best in Saturday’s clash with far too many passes going astray and some poor shooting from key players.
But Lightning had least to complain about in the final reckoning
Slovakian import Stan Lascek was again missing due to injury for both game – but this time coach Poole did not fill the void while Lewis Christie, recovering from injury, warmed up but didn’t ice.
Goalie Stephen Wall was put to the test by Aaron Nell in the early stages before Janne Jokila and Michael Farn both had good efforts stopped Swindon netminder Stevie Lyle.
In the final two minutes of the period Farn sent set up Janne Jokila but he was impeded by Aku Pekkarinen who was sin binned for slashing
Early in the second session Cownie broke up the right and shot when a pass to Blaz Emersic in the centre might have produced better results.
Cownie – playing on the first line - was involved when Lightning took the lead on 29mins 3secs, set up Leigh Jamieson to beat Lyle.
Lightning added to their tally 2-0 with Jamieson making the pass for Emersic to score from distance on 30mins 24secs.
There was an immediate timeout by Swindon who then became more physical in their approach, resulting in both Grant McPherson and Wildcats Ryan Watt being handed 10 minute misconduct penalties while Jokila and the visitors’ Henri Sandvik were both sin binned for two minutes
Swindon cut the deficit after 32mins 21secs after Jonas Hoog made the pass for Aaron Nell to beat Wall.
Hopes that the game would step up into a more intense affair as the third period began failed to materialise with Swindon unable to capitalise on a 54th minute tripping call on Leigh Jamieson – albeit being brief powerplay - as Hoog was then thrown out of the game on a five plus game penalty for checking Farn from behind.
Lyle was withdrawn from the Swindon goal in favour of the extra skater with 19 seconds to go and Emersic made sure of the points with an empty net strike at 59mins 53secs.
Emersic had a hand in Jokila’s opening goal for Lightning after 53 seconds at Telford the following night. But from then on it was largely downhill for the visitors.
Joe Miller, signed from Basingstoke Bison, levelled for the home team after 10mins 7secs before Adam Walker – a recruit from Elite League Braehead Clan supplied Scott McKenzie to give the home team the lead after 13mins 7secs.
Telford edged further ahead after 35mins 45secs when Mika Kiviranta supplied acquisition from Guildford Flames, Rick Plant.
Any hope Lightning had of a third session comeback took another dent when Marek Mikusovic added to the Tigers tally at 44mins 50secs.
Both Farn and Jamieson were in the penalty box when Michal Pavlu took the score to 5-1 after 55mins 38secs.
Less than 40-secs later Jokila registered his second of the night but it was nothing more than a consolation.
It was not the last incident of the game however with McPherson and Farn being given 10 minute misconduct penalties at the final buzzer while Jamieson received a second misconduct and a game misconduct was handed out to the Lightning bench.