Premier vs Nottingham 24.9.17
The Kingston Diamonds Premier team opened the season for the club, with an away trip to Nottingham on Sunday 24th September. After waiting a long time for a win last season, the Prems were determined to get off to a better start.
A better start was just what they did. At 7.42 of the first period the Diamonds got themselves on the board with a powerplay strike from Kiana Tait putting the Diamonds up 0-1. Then, just 17 seconds later the Diamonds doubled their lead as Carla Clark managed to corral a bobbling puck and put it past the glove of the Nottingham netminder, 0-2.
The Diamonds kept up the pressure and Captain Beth Barwell scored her first of the night at 12.49 with a lovely shot from the top of the circle, with assists from Hannah Gibson and Reagan Downing (her second of the game).
Nottingham managed to reply before the end of the period as Megan Rathbone scored at 15.09 for 1-3, and there was no more scoring before the first intermission.
The game seemed to shift momentum all night, and Nottingham definitely had the upper hand in the second period.
They came out flying and with Kim Hughes in the box for body-checking; Rathbone scored her second of the game, on the powerplay at 25.26 for 2-3.
The Diamonds then got caught on a change and were called for ‘too-many men’, and back on the powerplay, Nottingham tied the game 3-3, Madison Wright scoring at 27.03. Charlotte Cook in the Diamonds net, made some outstanding saves in the second period to keep the Diamonds in the game as they struggled to regain composure.
The period break finally came round with the scores balanced at 3-3.
Then, the momentum shifted back to the Diamonds and immediately after the opening face-off, Beth Barwell took the puck all the way up the wing and scored top corner on a long shot at 40.34.
Less than a minute later, the Diamonds regained their two-goal lead as Kiana Tait scored her second of the night on a nice shot at 41.26, unassisted.
The diamonds managed to keep the Vipers at bay for the next ten minutes or so but after a scramble in front, Madison Wright grabbed her second of the night to bring Nottingham back within one goal, 4-5.
A nervy final few minutes it was for all involved, as Nottingham pulled their goalkeeper for an extra attacker, in an attempt to tie the game, but the Diamonds defence held tight and closed out the victory!
Hannah Gibson picked a well-earned ‘Spirit of the Game’ award for some stellar defensive work and the team took home two very valuable points to start the season on a positive note.
The Elite Diamonds start their season next weekend, 1st October, with an away fixture at Sheffield. The Prems are next in action on the 15th October.