A first period powerplay goal from Denny Kearney was the highlight of Smith Recycling Milton Keynes Lightning’s visit to the National Ice Centre when they fell to a 5-1 defeat at the hands of Nottingham Panthers.
The goal levelled a strike from Panthers’ Evan Mosey and the hosts went on to add a pair of goals in each of the second and third periods to run out comfortable victors.
Lightning were at full strength apart from Christian Isackson who was again absent while they also included youngsters Luc Johnson and Glenn Billing in their line up.
Miika Wiikman was back between the pipes after Henry Pacl’s outing in the previous game and he was soon retrieving the puck after Mosey’s goal assisted by Panthers’s homegrown talent Robert Lachowicz at 2mins 30secs.
The first penalty of the encounter came on 7mins 47secs when Eric Lindhagen was called for slashing. Lightning made the most of the extra man with Kyle Essery and Carl Hudson involved in Kearney’s marker which came on the rebound after 8mins 18secs.
Panthers outshot Lightning 16-11 in the first session but neither side could add to their tally – the next goal for the hime outfit not coming until 26mins 40secs when Robert Farmer made the final pass for Brett Perlini to fire past Wiikman.
Seconds later Nottingham’s Yann Sauve was sin binned for holding the opponent’s stick but no goal resulted for Peter Russell’s outfit on the powerplay.
By the second break it was 3-1 after Farmer set up Dan Sprang for a strike after 37mins 14secs – the visitors having survived a penalty on Paul Phillips for holding.
An identical penalty was incurred by Panthers’ Luke Pither with a fruitless powerplay following for Lightning. The home powerplay units could make nothing of a 47th minute call for hooking on Jonathan Boxill, but back at even strength they made it 4-1 at 49mins 45secs when Alexander Mokshantsev got in on the scoring act.
Less than two minutes later at 51mins 3secs Mosey sealed the 5-1 win with his second of the night, ensuring Lightning would go home empty handed.
Man of the match: Kevin King.
By Paul Brookman
Photo: Andy Burnham