ICE HOCKEY: Pentecost's late strike sends Stars back to top

James Pentecost (far right) celebrates after scoring an equaliser with minutes left to play

James Pentecost (far right) celebrates after scoring an equaliser with minutes left to play

First published in Sport

James Pentecost scored a late equaliser as Oxford City Stars went back to the top of English National League South Division 2 after a thrilling 3-3 home draw against Chelmsford Warriors.

An end-to-end game saw Stars trail 2-0 and 3-2, but show great battling qualities to snatch a point late on.

Despite a frantic opening, neither side was able to create clear-cut chances, until the visitors took a 13th-minute lead.

A quick break from Olegs Lascenko ended with Bailey Chittock playing in Ellis Swainsbury, who fired home.

Five minutes later, Lawrence Refnell converted a Conor Swainsbury pass to make it 2-0.

A few strong words saw a different Stars side come out for the second period, but despite a host of opportunities, Chelmsford netminder Adam Long kept them at bay.

The hosts eventually took advantage of a powerplay to pull a goal back, Josh Oliver scoring to the relief of the home crowd.

Just 40 seconds later, quick passing from Mason Wild and Pentecost released Oliver, who danced around a defender, to fire home from the rebound after his initial shot was saved.

Joe Edwards had a goal disallowed at the start of the third period for Stars, who suffered a further blow when Thomas Wilson put Chelmsford 3-2.

Oxford responded by throwing everything at their visitors and eventually got their reward.

A pass from defender James Clarke released Oliver, who brushed off two Chelmsford players and crossed for Pentecost to slam the puck home at the back post and send them back to the top of the table.

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