Pitchley pleased to help London Raiders to win
PUBLISHED: 10:00 04 October 2016
Forward on target against former club Bracknell
London Raiders forward JJ Pitchley admitted he was pleased to score against former club Bracknell to help secure a first win of the new season.
Pitchley’s third-period effort sealed a 4-2 victory over the Hornets at Lee Valley and two National League Division One points.
And the 22-year-old is hoping it can be the start of a good run of results at home, following a 6-6 draw with Oxford in their opener.
He said: “Sunday was a much better game and the first win of many at home.
“We got off to a great start going 3-0 up, but then Nahlik went off injured which slowed things down a bit.
“Losing a forward is never good, but the boys pulled through. Ranson once again skated his socks off and hit everything in sight to cause turnovers.
“And I felt Bailey (Chittock) had an unreal game. He was very confident with the puck and stepped up well this weekend coming on the second line with me and Ranson.
“I was happy getting a goal against my old team, but getting the win made it even sweeter. It was a fantastic job by ‘P-head’ (Michael Gray), making some key saves in the third to shut the door.”
It was a much different story from Saturday’s trip to the Isle of Wight for a cup fixture.
Raiders were trailing 4-2 late in the second period, when Ranson’s hit on Sam Cheema provoked an angry response from the home side.
Pitchley came under fire, with Wight’s Corey Watkins and Ben Paynter given match penalties for fighting, as Raiders goalie Gray and Matt France were given game misconducts by referee Blaine Evans.
Young goalie Harry Buckingham replaced Gray in net and Pitchley, who had to be helped from the ice, praised the 16-year-old, while backing his side to enjoy more success.
He added: “There’s still room for improvement that’s for sure, but it’s still early doors. We still have a lot of firepower to show this year.
“It didn’t go as planned Saturday on the island. It’s never a good place to go and it never really seems to a hockey game there.
“Unfortunately with the events in the second it meant that we had to throw ‘Bucky’ in at the deep end, but the kid did good!
“He made some good saves and got his first of many senior minutes between the pipes.”