Lions feel the Fury of Romford as they are beaten by rivals

Romford Fury 7 Lee Valley Lions 5

In recent years, Lee Valley Lions nerves have faltered against local rivals Romford Fury, and last Saturday’s away game was no exception.

The Essex-based side had yet to win a game in this season’s campaign and their desire for victory greatly outweighed that of their visitors from the start, Fury’s style of play and determination only serving to emphasise weaknesses in the Lions that had been absent against other stronger opponents.

It took Romford less than two minutes to score their first goal, netminder Ruth Cattell making the initial stop, only for the puck to slide over the line.

Lee Valley equalised with a powerplay goal at 3:46, the shot coming courtesy of the reliable Richard Hodge.

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However, Romford clearly dominated play and Cattell’s unusually shaky performance between the pipes left the Lions trailing by three goals by the end of the first period.

The second period got off to a bad start for the Lions as their defence stood back and watched while another soft Romford goal made its way into the back of the net.

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Although a further Fury goal got past Cattell, Lee Valley’s efforts did improve and goals from Adam Peach, Blair Dubyk and Calum Heath gave the visiting fans hope that all was not lost.

However, with only a few exceptions, the team were lethargic and did not match Romford’s hunger for the puck.

At 6-4 down, Lee Valley Lions really had to turn up the heat in the final period and a stylish goal from Dubyk, assisted by Hodge, narrowed the home side’s lead to the slimmest of margins just two minutes in.

After a further easy goal from the Fury at 47:48, however, the Lions rested Ruth Cattell from netminding duties, replacing her with George Alley.

Alley’s confident display was solid enough to thwart the Romford attack, but despite a final push in the dying minutes, Lee Valley could not close the gap and the final 7-5 score gave the elated Fury their first win of the season.

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