Whitley Warriors are the new leaders of NIHL North Moralee D1 after a productive weekend on the road.
Warriors travelled to Telford Tigers NIHL on Saturday and went two ahead inside 26 minutes through Jordan Barnes and Callum Queenan.
Adam Taylor brought Tigers back into it, but David Longstaff restored the visitors’ two goal advantage just before the second break.
Goals by Taylor again and Philip Mulcahy looked to have secured a point for the home team, but Dan Pye’s strike with two minutes left sealed a 4-3 victory for Whitley.
The second North East derby of the season drew a bumper crowd to Billingham Forum to see the Stars and Warriors do battle.
Queenan put Whitley ahead early in the second period, but Dennis Dennis Boström levelled after 28 minutes. Shaun Kippin’s effort just before the end of the session made it 2-1 and Warriors held on in the third to claim a valuable win.
Two goals each for Sergejs Jegorovs and James Spurr helped Sutton Sting to a comfortable 6-0 win at Sheffield Spartans.
Sutton followed up by becoming the first team to take a point off leaders Blackburn Hawks. Netminder Dmitri Zimozdra (above) was in inspired form as Sting held on for a 2-2 draw.
Karol Jets (2) led the way for Telford as they bounced back from their defeat against Whitley to win 6-3 at Sheffield Senators.
Billingham got their Northern Cup campaign off to the perfect start with a 5-4 overtime success at Solway Sharks.
Chris Sykes and Michael Bowman edged Billingham two up inside four minutes, but goals by Juraj Senko (2) and Michael Corbett put Solway 3-2 ahead early in the second period.
Jack Davies and Bowman again restored the visitors’ lead by the halfway mark, before Iain Bowie made it 4-4 midway through the third.
With neither team able to break the deadlock during normal time and five minutes of overtime, it was left to Boström to seal the points with the deciding penalty shot.
Nottingham Lions still lead Laidler D2 after a 10-2 win at home to Coventry Blaze – Joe Humphries (3), Ondrej Pniok (2) and Slav Kasprzak (2) led the scoring.
Deeside Dragons kept up the pressure at the top of the table with an 8-3 success at Hull Jets – Filip Supa (2) and Marc Lovell (2) were amongst the scorers.
Promotion hopefuls Widnes Wild are still in the mix despite being held to a 4-4 draw at Altrincham Aces.
Jaroslav Kujec put the home team in front after seven minutes, but goals by Michal Fico, Shaun Dippnall and Scott McKenzie saw Widnes 3-1 up early in the second period.
Mason Howard reduced the deficit to one midway through the game, before McKenzie restored Wild’s two-goal advantage early in the third.
Aces refused to lie down as goals by Howard again and Joe Greaves sent both teams home with a point.
NIHL North Moralee D1
Billingham Stars 1-2 Whitley Warriors
Sheffield Senators 3-6 Telford Tigers NIHL
Sheffield Spartans 0-6 Sutton Sting
Solway Sharks 4-5 Billingham Stars (SO) (Northern Cup)
Sutton Sting 2-2 Blackburn Hawks
Telford Tigers NIHL 3-4 Whitley Warriors
NIHL North Laidler D2
Altrincham Aces 4-4 Widnes Wild
Hull Jets 3-8 Deeside Dragons
Nottingham Lions 10-2 Coventry Blaze
(Image permission: Dean Reeve Photography)