THEO Bundock grabbed the winner as Oxford City Stars beat Raiders Junior 3-2.

The summer signing made the difference with less than five minutes left on the clock to give Dean Birrell’s side a morale-boosting victory at Oxpens.

Stars were on the end of a heavy defeat 24 hours earlier, losing 10-2 at Bristol Pitbulls.

The hosts started the day eighth but are in a false position, having played at least four fewer games than everyone else in NIHL Division 1 South.

Steven Osman gave Pitbulls the lead after 90 seconds and it set the tone for the evening.

Stars goalkeeper Ross Miller was forced into several big saves in the early stages, but Cain Russell made it 2-0 with 12 minutes gone.

The hosts went 3-0 up before the end of the first period, although Birrell’s men threatened a comeback.

Matt Lawday pulled one back, before Josh Oliver made it 3-2 three minutes later.

But any hopes of salvaging anything disappeared in an erratic end to the second period, as Stars conceded three times before the break.

It was now a case of damage limitation, although Joe Edwards went close to adding a consolation shortly after the restart.

The rest of the final period was all Pitbulls, though, as they scored four times to end on double figures.

Stars had little time to dwell on the result, with Raiders in town the next day.

Miller was again called into early heroics as he made an excellent save on the breakaway, with Jakub Klima soon putting the hosts 1-0 up.

The contest continued at an energetic pace and both teams had chances, only for Raiders to equalise through Tjay Anderson.

Stars restored the lead in an instant, Klima bagging his second of the night from an Edwards assist.

It meant they again led during the break in play, but their opponents notched another equaliser early in the third period.

A tense finale ensued, before Bundock popped up with less than five minutes on the clock.

It leaves Stars eighth in NIHL Division 1 South.

The Oxfordshire outfit are without a game next week and return to the ice for the home fixture with Pitbulls on Sunday, December 5.

They have another fortnight off after that, before welcoming Invicta Dynamos on Saturday, December 18.