Adam Brittle scored four goals as Blackburn HAWKS claimed a 7-2 home win against Whitley Warriors on Sunday.
Hawks were quick to open their account for the evening – their first goal coming 48 seconds into the first period – as Brittle made an immediate impact, skating the puck in to round the Whitley net-minder.
Jake Nurse was soon to add to the lead, netting two goals , and the East-Lancashire side led 3-1 at the end of the first 20 minutes with Harry Harley finding the net for Whitley.
Blackburn maintained the frantic pace into the second period. The crowd had barely returned to their seats before Brittle fired home from Jon Adams less than a minute from the restart.
Whitley would return the favour 10 minutes later when Daniel Murdy brought the contest back within two goals, but they would be unable to add to their tally as the Hawks found top-gear.
Defenceman Scott Robson took advantage of a power-play opportunity to put his side up by three at the end of the second period with a 5-3 powerplay to look forward to when the puck dropped on the final 20 minutes.
Once again Adam Brittle began the period in style, taking a pin-point pass from player-coach Jared Owen and placing the puck past Lawson and securing his hat-trick.
And just five minutes from time, Brittle would find his fourth and final goal to cap off a 7-2 win for the Hawks – their 12th win in their last 13 matches.
Many were surprised to see the return of forward Ric Hughes to the lineup, playing through a knee injury that had threatened to end the Hawk’s season a few weeks ago.
Speaking to the Lancashire Telegraph, club captain, Chris Arnone, said: “It was a good performance against Whitley Warriors on Sunday and credit has to go to Ric Hughes for playing despite medical advice.
“Ric has had an operation on his knee and was advised not to play. We thought he might miss the rest of the season.
“But Aaron Davies couldn’t play because of work and Tom King couldn’t play either, so Ric said he’d put the shirt on and help us out.
“That just shows the spirit we have here, and how we stick together as a team.
“You need to do that sometimes, ice hockey is a tough sport and you’re never 100 per cent when you go on to the ice.”
The Hawks remain in second place in the NIHL N1 Moralee Conference, six points behind league leading Solway with five games to play.
Hawks have five league games remaining before the play-offs and travel over the Pennines to face the Sheffield Spartans on Saturday with the game starting at 7.30pm.
[Pictures by John Milton – togger.co.uk]