National League: London Raiders 2 Swindon Wildcats 7
PUBLISHED: 20:04 08 October 2017
Young goalie Zach Grandy-Smith impressed on his first start for London Raiders in defeat against former EPL side Swindon.
The 18-year-old was thrown into the firing line at Lee Valley after Euan King suffered a knee injury in the 7-1 loss at Basingstoke on Saturday.
And Grandy-Smith rose to the challenge, before three goals in the last four minutes gave Swindon a wider margin of victory.
The visitors took the lead with little over four minutes played as Sam Bullas pounced on a rebound.
But Raiders held out well in the face of more pressure, until 29 seconds before the first interval when Phil Hill doubled Swindon’s lead.
The scoreline remained unchanged during the middle session, with both sides unable to capitalise on power play chances, as Grandy-Smith saved from Jan Kostal and Floyd Taylor.
And the two goalies continued to impress in the final session, before Bullas bagged his second goal of the night with 11 minutes remaining.
Raiders could not take advantage of a tripping penalty against Kyle Smith and then lost JJ Pitchley to a slashing minor.
And Wildcats made their extra player count to net their fourth goal through Chris Jones, who made a handful of appearances in a Raiders jersey back in the 2009/10 English Premier League campaign.
Swindon lost Sam Zajac and Ben Nethersell to 10-minute misconduct penalties and Raiders broke their duck through Ollie Baldock, assisted by Juraj Huska and John Connolly.
But the home side’s joy was shortlived as Wildcats restored their four-goal margin soon after as Luc Johnson got his name on the scoresheet.
Raiders grabbed a second consolation with three minutes remaining through young defenceman Callum Wells, after Marek Nahlik and Matt Turner combined.
However, Swindon replied just five seconds later through Aaron Nell’s shorthanded goal, with Phil Hill serving a tripping penalty.
And when JJ McGrath was binned for cross-checking with just 94 seconds left, Swindon completed the scoring with their seventh on the power play as Bullas completed his hat-trick.