A short benched Wild were missing Ben Brown, Greg Ruxton, Danny Bullock, Calum Ruddick, Tom McDonald and Captain Shaun Dippnall going into the game. One of the outstanding players of the season, Geoff Wigglesworth, was handed the C.
The first period was played at a slow pace with neither team really pushing the net minders to their leave their com with the main talking point being the first penalty of the game given to the Jets Daniel Spence for holding, allowing Wild to be on the power play going to in the second.
A different Wild emerged for the second period with Captain Geoff Wigglesworth finding the back of the net to give the Wild the lead. Chris Preston quickly doubled the lead with his first goal of the season sending the large traveling cohort of Wild Ones into noisy celebration. Soon after the Wild lit up the red light again as Sheldon Cassidy’s slap shot flew into the back of the net. Then, with less than ten minutes to go, Lee Kemp put the biscuit in the basket to give Wild a four goal lead.
Jets, trying as they might to rectify the four goal lead and make the Wild suffer, flooded the goal shot after shot making Benstead show why he’s one of the most improved net minders in the league. Then, as the second period was drawing to a close, the second penalty of the night was given to Jets’ Ben Slayer meaning the Wild would start the third period just as they had started the second one, on the power play.
Despite having the power play, Wild didn’t really take advantage of the extra man on the ice. This gave the Jets their first goal when Chris Hogarth scored from a breakaway. Jets quickly fired in their second from Kieran Beach which went it due to an unfortunate deflection. The Wild One’s nerves were quickly settled when Wild stalwart, Tom Jackson, found the back of the Jets net with a rocket of a shot.
The last ten minutes of the final period was everything the first period wasn’t. The Jets got their third of the night from Joshua Blissett and sensing the opportunity to gain a point from the game they threw everything but the kitchen sink at the game. Jets then took advantage of the power play when Ken Armstrong was sent to the box for delaying the game and Kieran Beach was rewarded with his second of the night.
Wild called a timeout to collect themselves and to disrupt the Jets momentum. The tactic worked and Scott McKenzie, who had been uncharacteristically quite all game, found the net with the final goal of the game, giving a final score of 4 – 6.
MVP was awarded to Kieran Beach of the Jets, with the MVP for the Wild going to Joshua Benstead for the second time this season.
Reported by Jess Cowie