Platform Magazine

Nottingham Trent v Uni of Nottingham 17-4: Varsity ice hockey match report

In a huge turnaround from Varsity 2023, NTU beat UON 17-4 in a thrilling attacking riot to right the wrongs of their late dramatic loss of 2-1 last year. 

Period 1:

The game started at a lightning pace, Zachary Yokoyama pass across the ice found Mark Kanins who smacked in the puck from the right-hand side into the roof of the net and wheeled away in celebration to give Trent an early lead over their Nottingham rivals.

The UON defence couldn’t handle the transitions of the Trent defence into attack after a long dribble by Mark Kanins going to Yokoyama whose effort was saved but the rebound was scored by Alexandr Kozachuk.

The dominant start continued as NTU counter Hadden Boldstridge did well to dribble through the middle and after great control four minutes in took it away from the defender on the right-hand side – there was nothing the keeper could do close to his right and it was Harry MacGarvey to bag Trent’s third.

It only took 12 more minutes for another goal as after a long shot was blocked luckily in the 16th minute it fell to Yokoyama who had an easy shot from close range to make it 4-0. 

Throughout this first half, the difference between the two sides was stark – NTU had great transitional play and good dribblers and passers whereas UON looked less cohesive to start and failed to test the Trent keeper. 

In the same minute, the succession of goals continued as MacGarvey regained the puck after a poor UON giveaway near the centre of the rink, making it 5. 

But it was not to be a clean sheet for the team in pink in the opening period as after a gift of a giveaway from NTU, the team in green was quick to capitalise on the mistake and with four minutes to go the puck trickled into the net from James Shaw in a goal-line scramble.  

The Trent heads didn’t become flustered after conceding their first as Joe Bradley from the right side, despite a horrible angle, shot high past the keepers left-hand side into the roof of the net for 6-1 in the power play.

Period 2: 

The game was so far characterised by a quickness and this was shown in the second period. 

After just two minutes played and a good save from close range by the Trent keeper,  Shaw for UON was there to gobble up the rebound from Elliot Hunt’s saved shot to make it 6-2. 

Then for a while, it seemed the defences and goalkeepers were on top as the period was much quieter with the first as neither side could break the other down for the next ten minutes – the longest spell without a goal in the game. 

For now, tensions weren’t too high but the first signs of simmer were on show after a huge goal line scramble in, multiple players holding, pushing and one UON player held a stick, tensions were beginning to rise. 

But after three quick passes and great attacking movement from NTU on the break a wonderful team goal was scored with the puck played over to the right-hand side by Kanins who passed to Yokoyama and then back across for Keiran Gibbs to smash it in past the keeper for 7-2 with just over 8 minutes left to play. 

Here was the highest point of tension between the teams as the referees broke up the small fight with six minutes to play and both teams were heavily involved. 

A Penalty for UON number Ben Johnson with just under six minutes to play, it was a two-minute penalty for roughing and ten minute penalty for unsportsmanlike behaviour 

Then the floodgates were back to being open as Kanins for NTU went past the keeper to tap into an empty net after a great solo run down the right-hand side with just over five minutes of the period left to play. 

Hadden Boldstridge goal compounded the UON defensive misery as he now goes round keeper again for an easy tap-in finish for 9-2.

Uni of get battered chants rang through the Motorpoint and who could blame the Trent fans – it was a wipeout that nobody could believe. 

Yet again UON were there late to score late in the period by Andrew Salgo assisted by Samuel Hazeldine to make it to try and decrease the deficit. 

But this was not to last for long as with under a minute left to play, Maddison Wright slipped, recovered and shot in an unassisted goal as Trent hit ten.

Period 3:

Kanins made a great turn in the opening minute which fell nicely for Yokoyama and he was able to push it past the UON goalkeeper for 11-3.

A great interception to take the ball off NTU close to their own goal by William Rothwell, assisted by Benjamin Bridgett and just over two minutes in it is 11-4.

Just under four minutes into the final period, NTU made it 12-4 with a goal from Ellis Pimborough-Jones assisted by number Yokoyama and Thomas Scothern in what was a three-on-one for the Trent attack, a recurring theme of the game which was won through Trent’s potent attacking abilities, something the Mavericks just couldn’t match.

Yokoyama then regained the puck after a tackle and it was swept home by Mark Kanins for 13-4.

A scuffle with just over six minutes to go led to penalties for UON’s James Shaw for boarding and NTU’s Alexandr Kozachuk for roughing.

With less than five minutes on the clock, Hadden Boldstridge netted NTU’s 15th goal following an astonishing solo run, rounding the goalkeeper and slotting home a cool finish.

And as if the match couldn’t get any more eventful, a two-minute penalty was awarded to UON for too many men on the ice.

The UON number 1 continued to remain alert and made three good saves in the last two minutes to stop NTU from extending their lead further.

Moments later down the other end of the rink, Boldstridge was involved in a huge collision after chasing for a ricocheting puck, taking the wind out of his sails and leading to a time-out.

In the dying moments, a foul by UON’s goalkeeper to prevent a certain NTU goal resulted in the game’s first penalty shot converted by Michael Berehwoskyj with some slick dribbling to compound the UON misery and take the game to 16-4.

And yet with the clock running down and 12 seconds to spare, NTU couldn’t stop scoring and added a 17th goal after a huge goal line scramble where UON couldn’t clear the puck, taking the total goals on the night to 21 with a resounding 17 of them in Trent’s favour.

A night to forget for UON and redemption after last year’s tight loss for NTU as the game ended NTU 17 – UON 4.

Platform Magazine
NTU lift the 2024 Varsity Ice Hockey trophy to earn the first victory of the series.

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