National League: London Raiders 1 Basingstoke Bison 4
PUBLISHED: 19:54 27 January 2018 | UPDATED: 08:01 31 January 2018
London Raiders ended their life in Lee Valley with a hard-fought loss against title-chasing National League rivals Basingstoke.
Raiders started life at Lee Valley on September 14, 2013 with a 6-1 win over Solent Devils, with Danny Marshall netting the first goal on assists from Frankie Harvey and Andrius Kaminskas.
And JJ Pitchley went on to claim a hat-trick as Grant Taylor and Marshall added the other Raiders goals on opening night.
Although Pitchley is in gold and blue again, Tom Davis is the only player to have survived since that first match, when the Raiders line-up also included Nathan Pollard, Shaun Yardley, Jason Buckman, Dwayne Newman, Billy and Charlie Phillips, JJ McGrath, David Oliver, Jacob Ranson, Dan Peters and goalies Euan King and Dan Lane.
The current squad, having beaten Bracknell and Streatham a week earlier, found themselves behind with barely two minutes on the clock.
But Raiders killed off an elbowing penalty against Davis towards the end of the first period, during which they were outshot 17-9 by the visitors.
Title-chasing Basingstoke doubled their lead within four minutes of the restart, but they ran into penalty trouble of their own, although Raiders were unable to capitalise on back-to-back power play chances, including a brief 42-second spell of 5-on-3.
The visitors went 3-0 up in the final minute of the middle session, during which time the shots had been even at 16-16.
But that left Raiders with a mountain to climb in their final 20 minutes of action in east London, especially as they had only netted once on two trips to Basingstoke, suffering 7-1 and 6-0 defeats earlier this season.
There would be no fairytale finish for Raiders, as Bison netted their fourth goal of the night in the 44th minute.
But Alan Lack did end the shutout hopes of Dean Skinns when netting against his former club with just over 10 minutes remaining and it proved to be the final goal of the night and the last of Raiders time at Lea Bridge Road.
Raiders make the trip to Invicta Dynamos on Sunday, before their move to Romford and the new Sapphire Ice & Leisure Centre for a match against bottom club Cardiff Fire on Saturday, February 3.