Murrayfield Racers return from the west with two league victories

Jock Hay delighted with four-point weekend as Sharks lie in wait

Sunday, 12th January 2020, 8:40 pm
Updated Sunday, 12th January 2020, 8:42 pm
Callum Boyd has an effort saved by the Paisley netminder. Pictures: Ian Coyle

Murrayfield Racers, helped by two goals apiece from brothers Marty and Garry Simpson, made it a four-point weekend in the Scottish National League, beating Paisley Pirates 8-1 at Braehead Arena last night. The win came just 24 hours after thrashing Paisley’s west coast neighbours Kilmarnock Thunder 23-1 on Saturday.

Paisley who trailed 2-0 at the end of the first period, had chances to get back into the game before two goals early in the second period put the tie out of reach of the home side, Joel Gautschi, Rihards Grigors, Michael Ireland and Alex Christian completing the scoring for the visitors.

The performance drew praise from assistant coach Jock Hay, who said: “It wasn’t as comfortable as the scoreline suggests, we were leading 2-0 and they had two great breakaway chances. They missed the net with one and Mark (Racers’ goalie Mark McGill) made a good save with the other.

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“They also had another good chance right at the start of the second period, Mark made another save there. If any of those had gone in it might have given them some momentum. Once we got those goals in the second period, we pulled away a bit.”

Racers sit second in the SNL table, winning eight of their nine league games, their only league defeat coming at the hands of leaders Solway Sharks who Murrayfield face twice this weekend in what should be an exciting home-and-away double header in the semi-final of the National Ice Hockey League Cup.

Hay believes Racers are playing well enough to pick up their first victory over the Dumfries outfit who have won all three previous meetings between the sides this season.

Hay continued: “It was a pretty disciplined display from us. Our positional play was good and we didn’t make many mistakes in bad areas, which is the sort of thing that’s very important when you play against a better team, like we are this weekend, you need to make sure you don’t give away free chances.

“Also, the quality of our build-up play over our last two games has been very good, there’s been a lot of good quality puck movement in the lead-up to goals which is another thing we will need to do well this weekend against Solway.