Match Report by Matthew Davies of the Swindon Avertiser
SWINDON Wildcats claimed a solid win on the road at Hull Pirates, although the main talking point from tonight’s clash came in the third period as Ollie Stone was taken off of the ice on a trolley.
The Cats youngster was on the end of a check to the head in the final period, which appeared to make the D-man lose consciousness.
After a lengthy stoppage play was allowed to conclude and a double from Tomasz Malasinski plus a first Swindon goal for Phil Hill was enough for the visitors register a 3-2 win at the Hull Arena.
The first period was a scrappy affair as although Swindon put early pressure on the hosts, it was they would be the first to concede. Hull made the most of Mark Smith’s two-minute penalty for hooking as Jason Hewitt handed them the initiative in the fourth minute.
The home side looked the more likely of the two to score again as they continued to turn the screw with sustained pressure on Stevie Lyle’s goal.
At the halfway stage of the period, Swindon survived a frantic scramble at Lyle’s goal before the puck found its way out to Malasinski. The 30-year-old then beat his marker before slotting the puck into the net to drag his side level.
The second period was scrappy from the start and Swindon had to dig deep not to fall behind for the second time in the game and coach Aaron Nell will be pleased with how his side managed to kill the hosts’ penalties as the Pirates held a numerical advantage on several occasions but failed to strike a telling blow.
Chances were few and far between for the visitors and they were on the ropes at times but after a firm backs-to-the-wall effort, they were able to get their noses in front for the first time deep into the second as new addition Hill grabbed his first goal in Wildcats colours.
Malasinski was able to push the away side further in front with his second goal of the night in the opening minutes of the third period.
The game then took a sour turn as youngster Stone took a hit against the boards with 15 minutes to go, which saw the 18-year-old knocked unconscious and both teams being sent to the locker room. Hull’s Jordan Stokes was handed a match penalty for a check to the head as the final period restarted and although James Chilcott claimed a second for the hosts in the final minute, the Wildcats clung on to see out the win.
Statement From Aaron Nell regarding Ollie Stone post-match:
Thanks for all your messages regarding Ollie Stone, he's staying over night in hospital as a precaution, but he's awake and talking. We'd like to thank our physio Charley and a huge thanks to the Hull Pirates physio and Doctor for their work this evening.