BLACKBURN Hawks hauled themselves up to second in the NIHL Moralee Conference by winning an 11-goal thriller with Sheffield Spartans on Sunday.

Jared Owen’s side’s 7-4 success, combined with Billingham Stars’ 5-1 defeat at Whitley Warriors, moved them up a place and kept them within seven points off table-topping Solway Sharks.

It also stretched the red-hot Hawks’ winning run at home to nine matches.

Their latest victory at the Blackburn Ice Arena owed a great deal to the support they received from the stands.

The Hawks faithful lifted their side when major penalty calls went against them.

The third-from-bottom Spartans made the most of their power-play opportunities to stay in the game.

However the Hawks’ class told when they were at full strength and they eventually proved too strong for the spirited visitors.

But an 11th victory from the last 12 games came at a cost for Hawks who went into the fixture carrying a number of injuries.

And on Sunday, Reece Cairney-Witter suffered mild concussion.

He will have to be assessed in training on Thursday to see if he will be fit for Sunday’s home clash with fifth-placed Whitley.

Captain Chris Arnone, who was among the goalscorers, was also in the wars but is expected to be fit to lead the side this weekend.