THE Basingstoke Bison moved up from ninth to seventh and back into the play-off places after a superb four-point weekend, writes Graham Merry.

First up at home the Herd beat the Telford Tigers 3-2 and then 24 hours later won in Hull 6-3.

In the Tigers victory, Aidan Doughty opened the scoring in the fourth minute as he tipped home Brendan Baird's blue-line blast.

Man of the match Gail Lubwele with an excellent top corner strike doubled the lead at 10:50.

The Tigers made the most of a stray defensive pass as Jake Price slotted home in the 27th minute.

The Bison suffered another blow when Lubwele picked up a five-minute penalty for elbows.

However, the visitors then suffered their own penalty trouble and during a long period of four-on-four Liam Morris scored a brilliant solo goal to make it 3-1 at the second break.
Telford's Scott McKenzie then set up a tense finish as he scored with just under nine minutes left.

Soon after, the Bison's Doughty was sent crashing into the boards and had to be stretchered off the ice and took no further part in the weekend.

Telford piled on the pressure in the final minutes, but the Herd kept them out for a deserved win.

On Sunday night in Hull, the Seahawks took under four minutes to take the lead from Andrej Themar.

The Bison hit back as despite Baird being in the sin bin, Marcel Balaz netted shorthanded and then Lubwele gave them a 2-1 lead at the first break.

Emil Svec tied the game early in the second session, but another Lubwele strike kept the Herd ahead going into the final 20 minutes.

Man of the match Lubwele with his hat-trick goal made it 4-2, before Declan Balmer pulled one back.

With exactly six minutes left George Norcliffe extended the Bison lead and an empty netter from Hallam Wilson made sure of the win.

After a double-winning weekend Bison head coach Ashley Tait said: “I thought against Telford we did just enough to win and probably made it more difficult than it should have been.

“Hull is a difficult place to go. We did not start well and Mettsy (Alex Mettam) was immense and we scored when it mattered and everyone got better as the game went on.”

This weekend the Bison have a doubleheader with the Raiders, who are directly above them in the standings.

The home game is on Saturday (6.30pm) with the away match in Romford on Sunday (5.15pm). 

Tait said: "It is a big weekend and we need to close the gap on them, but so far this season we have not shown up at all against the Raiders.”