Nottingham Lions 0 - Great Britain Under-20s 10.
A packed house, two great teams and one great cause was the package on offer at the National Ice Centre as the Nottingham Lions faced off against Team GB U-20’s on a chilly Tuesday evening. The exhibition match-up was all in aid of raising funds for the Lions' 2014/15 charity partner Special Olympics Nottinghamshire.
Lions MOTM - Perry Doyle.
The Lions were bolstered with three familiar faces, British stalwart Perry Doyle of Midland rivals Solihull Barons supplemented the Lions blue line along with former Lion, Tom Norton who currently plies his trade with the English Premier League's Peterborough Phantoms. The forward core also received their own offensive boost, with the addition of another Phantom and ex-Lion, Marc Levers.
Team GB hit the ice hard and within a few minutes scored several goals leaving Nottingham’s heads spinning, they used speed, skill and agility to exploit every last weakness and by the end of the first period commanded a seven goal lead.
Marc Levers back playing in Lions colours.
The Lions were down but not out, the score may have been out of reach but over the next two periods only conceded three goals to the highly talented GB outfit and they worked hard to heap back some of the pressure into GB’s defensive zone. It was an exciting spectacle that demonstrated a bright future for British ice hockey as the Under-20’s look to have fire in their bellies heading into the six team IIHF tournament in Estonia this December.
Perry Doyle took the man of the match award for Notingham and deservedly so as he, Norton and Levers, along with the Lions' regular veterans fought to keep the young side's heads up and legs moving.
Tom Norton in action against Great Britain.
Special Olympics figure skater Megan McFarlane made a special appearance in the first intermission and stole the show, the youngster put on a performance that kept the crowd in their seats and the players cheering from the benches as she worked through her routine. An extremely talented young lady who the Nottingham Lions are proud to support as she embarks upon a bright skating career.
All funds raised on the night and for the rest of the season will go towards Megan's training fees, via the Nottinghamshire-based charity and this Great Britain exhibition game provided a brilliant debut opportunity to thrust the partnership into the spotlight in style.
For more details on the Special Olympics Nottinghamshire and Megan McFarlane you can find details here.
The Lions thoughts now turn back to league matters, as they prepare for a trip to North Wales to face the Deeside Dragons this Sunday (9th November), 6.45pm face off.
Photographs courtesy of Peter McConnachie / Urban Scot Photography.