The Devils' annual summer BBQ was a huge success with veteran blueliner Nathan Bowman and family playing host to over fifty guests. Of course no Devils BBQ could be possible without our amazing sponsor and grillmaster extraordinaire, Andre Blais who provided an unrivalled feast for all. The celebrations went on deep into the night and there were plenty of foggy heads on Sunday to prove it!
The Rangers rallied the troops for the fifth and deciding game and delivered an emphatic win to take the series. Up two goals after two minutes, the Rangers never looked back. Congratulations to them for coming back from two games down to win.
London Devils: Scoring
Mike Fox-Higgins (unassisted)
London Devils: Penalties
M. Fox-Higgins (hold)
P. Kerner (rough)
P. Kerner (cross)
R. Clark (inter)
F. Walshe (rough)
F. Walshe (rough)
D. Maze (trip)
Devils North lifted the Bodeanís Cup for the second consecutive season after a spirited display saw them triumph over Devils South in a rematch of last season's final.
The route to the final had been a rollercoaster for both teams albeit not exactly Alton Towers-esque given the fact only three teams compete in the Bodean's Cup. More a small rollercoaster at Legoland Windsor for under 11s.
South started the campaign brightly only to fall away and then recover like a tired sailor discovering a bottle of bourbon in the ship cupboard.
The North had looked dead and buried in March after a pair of confidence-sapping drubbings before a stunning turnaround in form. The key being an amazing comeback from 4-1 down to beat East West 7-4 in their final game of the season.
And so, at the historic Alexandra Palace the Bodeanís Cup Final 2019 faced off with gusto under the watchful eye of Pawel Olczak.
Missing star forwards Mike Fox-Higgins and Chris Phillips, South opted for a defensive game plan from the start with in-form netminder Shane Kemp a key component.
Without the smooth skating Richie Clark to quarterback things, the North employed a dump and chase tactic designed to create spells of pressure on the South goal. The tactics from both sides ensured the game as a spectacle was not one that would be remembered for anything other than the final result and the trophy lift - all that matters really anyway.
It was the North who scored first as Dan Maze carried the puck over the blueline, dropped to James Hepburn who faked the slapper, and found the still streaking Maze at the back post who finished calmly for 1-0. With the cling film broken, the North pushed on for more goals but Kemp refused to buckle, making a number of spectacular saves before the period was out.
If the South thought the 2nd period would get any easier they would be disappointed. The North set up camp in the offensive zone with the South struggling to get the puck out. The South were limited to long shots on stand-in North keeper Matty Hodgkins - each of which he swallowed well with no rebounds on offer. Hodgkins was having a relatively routine evening and could have been forgiven for sparking up a cigar, until his serenity was broken by a man well known for ruining peace and quiet.
It was Paul 'Mouth of the South' House who evened the score when Ian Williams picked out and inch perfect pass in front of net which House redirected past the North stopper to tie things up.
All tied at the start of the third, the result could now go either way. The North stuck to their gameplan but the South had grown into the game, buoyed by Kemp's strong goalkeeping. South skipper Rich Veinot created some space for himself down the right wing and ripped a rocket shot off the post. This acted as a wakeup call for the North who needed something extra to break the deadlock.
The Northís tactic of firing the puck in, blocking the channels and letting their forecheckers do the business was by now causing the South to tire. With eight minutes remaining, James Mulligan drifted into the zone and cut across the slot, before placing his shot through traffic past an unsighted Kemp for the all important go-ahead goal. The South needed a spark, but the thunder never arrived. With five minutes remaining, Giuseppe Malacarne controlled nicely, circled the South zone before firing from the slot. His rebound fell kindly at the back post to North captain Frank Walshe, who stabbed it home to make it 3-1.
The South pulled Kemp for an extra skater with two minutes to go, however despite Rich Veinot attempting to score directly from a face off four times in a row, there was to be no consolation.
The North celebrated on the final buzzer after a strong team performance. The South were gracious in defeat and raised a cheer for their opponents - a testament to the spirit in which the Bodean's Cup is played. -DC & FW
Devils North: Scoring
Dan Maze (J. Hepburn, J. Alcock)
James Mulligan (D. Maze, J. Sullivan)
Frank Walshe (G. Malacarne, H. Grant)
Devils South: Scoring
Paul House (I. Williams)