A disappointing home performance saw the Storm fall 7-3 to Nottingham Panthers.
An opening period with few whistles produced some entertaining hockey and high-quality goaltending. League favourite, Springer, was on-hand to tap home the first goal in the 13th minute, with Simmonds and Fawcett providing the assist. However, two exceptional finishes from Domingue and Betteridge saw the Panthers take the 2-1 lead, as both forwards picked their spot top-shelf.
A goalmouth scramble brought the Storm level, as Hamilton tucked away the short-handed opportunity. The tie was broken midway through the second when Baillargeon slammed home Ginn’s rebound. A fortuitous bounce of the puck gave the Panthers their fourth, and Domingue his second, in the 33rd minute of the game. Things didn’t improve for the Storm, as Brassard somehow managed to bank the puck off Ginn just 23 seconds later. The 5-2 scoreline persisted until the second period ended, leaving the hosts a mountain to climb.
A big slapshot from the stick of Doherty evaded everyone on the ice to further the Panthers advantage in the 43rd minute of play. Panthers’ pressure did not relent when a seventh was added by Betteridge, a goal which saw Ginn replaced by Downie for the final six minutes of action. The hosts did manage to score their third in the final five minutes of action, as Simmonds deflection from Brady’s shot beat Carr in Nottingham’s goal. This concluded the scoring in a lively first competitive encounter between the two sides.