Sunday 5th February 2023 – WNIHL Div 2 (N)
DMUK Widnes Wild Women 15 – Kingston Diamonds 2
The DMUK Widnes Wild women’s team notched up a comprehensive 15-2 victory in a bad tempered encounter with the Hull–based Kingston Diamonds at Planet Ice Widnes on Sunday.
Widnes got off to a flying start and took the lead with a Preston Gennoe goal after just 53 seconds. Team captain Leen de Decker doubled the advantage on 6 minutes and Katie Fairclough made it 3-0 to the Wild women 6 minutes later. Hull pulled a goal back on 14 minutes to stay in contention and the score stood at 3-1 at the first period break
Widnes remained the dominant force in the second period, although the Hull team never gave up and did give a good account of themselves in patches. Katie Adshead scored her first ever Widnes goal on 23 minutes and Victoria Connelly edged the Wild women further ahead with a goal just 27 seconds later. This was countered on 25 minutes by another Kingston strike to bring the score to 5-2 but then the floodgates opened and the Wild women fired in 5 unanswered goals in an incredible 5 minute spell.
A second strike for Connelly was followed up by a first senior goal for Sophia Green, then two more for Katie Fairclough and second of the game for de Decker racked the score up to 10-2 by the end of the second period.
The Widnes “goal rush” continued in the third period with a second strike from Gennoe just 79 seconds from the restart, a goal for Laura Marcroft 90 seconds later and a hat-trick goal for Gennoe 104 seconds after that.
Katie Fairclough scored her 4th goal of the game in the 50th minute and then things started to get a bit “tetchy”. With the score standing at 14-2 with just 10 minutes left to play, the game was obviously out of the reach of the struggling Diamonds team and some of the niggles that had started earlier in the game began to surface.
At 50.50 on the clock a mass scuffle broke out in the corner by the Diamonds goal involving most of the players on the ice. This is quite unusual in the normally sedate “non-contact ” sport of women’s ice hockey and it took the match officials a little while to sort things out.
The Kingston instigator of the melée was given a 5 + game penalty for fighting while Sophia Green had to sit out a 10 minute misconduct for Widnes.
The scoring for the game was rounded off with a 5th goal for Fairclough with just 58 seconds left to play and the Wild women were able to celebrate their biggest margin of victory since they beat Nottingham Vipers 15-1 back in January 2020 in their Division 1 North title winning season.
The Kate Luard Memorial MVP awards – sponsored by Poet-in-Residence Lucy London – were presented by special guests Laura Prescott and her daughter Emily. Laura is the CEO of Debt Movement UK who are the Wild womens’ team’s title sponsors for the season. The awards went to Tiya Dhillon for Kingston and Karyn Cooper for Widnes.
The DMUK Widnes Wild Women are next in action on Saturday 18th February when travel to Lincolnshire to play the Grimsby Wolves. They are next at home on Sunday 5th March when they face the same opposition at Planet Ice Widnes, 4.15pm face off.