Brilliant Hawks claim the silverware

First published in Ice Hockey

Blackburn Hawks moved to within touching distance of the top of the table after recording back-to-back away wins – and getting their hands on some silverware in the process.

The local ice hockey aces beat Coventry Blaze 5-3, before lifting the Steve Perks Memorial Trophy courtesy of a 3-0 win away to Solihull Barons.

Steve was a long-time supporter and match night official of the Barons, as well as the dad of player Rob Perks.

He died last year and the trophy was thought of as a fitting tribute to his memory.

The maximum point haul sees Hawks move to within one point of second-place Whitley Warriors and three points of league leaders Billingham Stars, who face each other this weekend.

Team manager Graham Lomax said: “It was an absolutely fantastic weekend.

“On paper, it was two tricky fixtures, so we are delighted to come away with four points.

“The lads came through with flying colours.”

Hawks had Sami Narkia to thank for getting the weekend off to the perfect start.

The Finnish import scored a hat-trick, as Hawks put the Barons to the sword.

“After two periods, we were 4-0 up and cruising,” added Lomax.

“We lost our way a little bit in the third period. Tom King picked up a silly penalty and was thrown out of the game.

“They then pulled a couple of goals back, but we nicked another one towards the end.

“Sami was absolutely outstanding that night and the pleasing thing is, he’s getting better week on week.”

Hawks then extended their unbeaten run to 11 games, a sequence that includes 10 wins and one draw, with another professional performance away to the struggling Solihull outfit, who have now been relegated.

The Barons made a bright start, but two goals in a minute from Jordan Bannon turned the tide in Hawks’ favour.

David Meikle added a third after the interval, and despite plenty of penalties in the final period, there were no more goals.

“Even though Solihull are bottom, it is still a very difficult place to go,” added Lomax.

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