The Dragons welcomed a powerful Whitley Warriors team to The Den on Sunday, with high hopes of building on their first win of the season, the previous weekend.
The Warriors were fast out of the blocks in what turned out to be a seesaw, roller coaster of a game. Warriors experienced player/coach Longstaff scored first on 2:34, before former Dragon Kippin got the first of his 4 goals, in the 7th minute. The Dragons struggled to create any pressure on the visitors goal in the first 10 minutes but had managed to stop the rot and were gradually getting back into the game.
Skipper #5 Parsons opened The Dragons account on the 12th minute and Pocket Rocket #10 Chapel brought the teams level in the 18th minute.
Going into the second period, the Dragons were killing a penalty, but from the face off #77 McKenzie, burst through a flat-footed Warriors defence to smash home from the top of the circles and gave the home team the lead for the first time in the game. The Dragons quickly doubled their lead with #12 Wigglesworth finishing bravely on the power play.
The Dragons were putting together a great middle period and despite a brace of goals from Kippin, the Dragons maintained their 2-goal league with excellent team goals from #14 Brodin and #73 Dippnall. The Dragons ended the second period 6-4 to the good and looked set for the Home team to push on and secure their second win of the season.
The Warriors, however, had other ideas. They grabbed a 5th goal almost straight from the face off, then after a couple of cheap penalties quickly grabbed two further power play goals to take the lead. Four minutes into the third period the Warriors had scored again to take a 9-6 lead and affectively kill off the game. The Warriors added 2 further goals. Final Score Dragons 6 , Whitley Warriors 11.
A quite frankly shell-shocked Dragons crowd left the Den wondering exactly what they had just witnessed. We took the opportunity to catch up with Dragons Player/Coach Scott McKenzie shortly after the game for his thoughts on what had just happened. An always honest and frank McKenzie said
“My first reaction is to apologise to our fans for that third period performance. We will take some time to work out exactly what went wrong and make sure it doesn’t happen again. We have a very honest locker room. We showed in the second period that we had more than enough to compete with Whitley Warriors, but a 3 minute brain freeze at the start of the 3rd period absolutely killed us. Poor decision making and cheap penalties have to be cut out. The boys make mistakes, but they wont dwell on those mistakes. That’s when you know you have a bunch of guys worth persevering with. Right now this really hurts, but we only know how to move forward and that’s what we will do at training next week, ready for a testing double header next weekend”
Dragons Man of the Match #11 Jordan Bannon.