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Basingstoke Buffalo aim to complete the double over the Wightlink Tigers
THE Basingstoke Buffalo will be looking for their first double of the season when they face local rivals the Wightlink Tigers on Sunday night (face-off 6.30pm).
Earlier in the season on the Isle of Wight, the Buffalo won 6-4 as captain Neil Leary led the scoring with a brace, while Elliott Dewey, Greg Martyn, Francesco Tambellini and Sam Dollin also netted.
Last weekend, the Buffalo were unable to stop the visiting title-chasing Swindon Wildcats as they went down 7-2.
Not for the first time this season, the home side found themselves up against over-used import as defenceman Jan Melichar iced for nearly the whole game.
The Czech-born blue liner is in his first season in the National Hockey League after eight years playing in the English Premier League and has played against the Bison for the last four seasons.
Despite being out shot 23-5 in the opening period, thanks to netminder Chris Edwards, the Buffalo trailed by just one goal.
The second session saw the sides swap goals, with Swindon scoring first, before Chris Beauclerk replied, assisted by Chris Beal and Leary.
The Wildcats netted another, but once again the lead was cut as Roberto Tambellini converted a pass from Beal.
The final period saw the visitors score four unanswered goals to run out 7-2 winners.
The Buffalo man-of-the-match was their goalie, Edwards, who had a very busy evening, facing 65 shots.
On the same day, the under-18s enjoyed an excellent 4-3 win at Cardiff, after they trailed 1-0 at the end of the first period.
The visitors equalised as Matt Levy converted a pass from Dewey.
Four minutes later, at 27.19, the Bison took the lead as Paul Petts finished a move involving Alex Sampford and Nathan Moss.
Connor Hutchinson and Lewis Jennings, assisted by Levy and Steven Ratcliff, made it 4-1.
The last period saw Cardiff score two unanswered goals to set up a tense finale, but the Bison held on to win.
The team are back in action on Sunday (face-off 4.40pm).
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