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4-Point Weekend Review VS Bristol Pitbulls!

On Saturday it was Jake Witkowski who struck twice inside the first five minutes to put the visitors ahead, the deficit halved by Ed Bardley with a power play strike at 6.31.

The second period was equally tight, Archie Hazeldine and Howlett getting on the board for Leeds, with former Leeds Chiefs’ forward Caly Robertson and Nik Coric beating Sam Gospel at the other end.

Shudra doubled the Knights’ lead at 43.25, and it was not so plain sailing for the Knights, with just under 14 minutes left, when they were only one goal to the good after their former defenceman Ben Solder struck to make it 5-4.

But the visiting Knights didn’t take long to double their advantage, the impressive Witkowski sealing a deserved hat-trick at 46.33.

Just under five minutes later it was game over when Shudra made it 7-4 with his second of the night and although Reece Kelly pulled one back at 53.56, the Knights held firm, Howlett adding an empty-net marker with 53 seconds remaining.

Bristol simply couldn’t match their opponents’ firepower, something which was far more evident in the subsequent meeting at Elland Road just under 24 hours later.

As it was the previous night down in Bristol, there was little to choose between the two sides inside the first 20 minutes, the Knights 2-0 ahead at the first break thanks to goals from Matt Haywood, on the power play at 8.04, and defenceman Dylan Hehir, whose shot on net through traffic eluded Tyler Perre in the Bristol goal at 13.41.

It looked like it would remain the same at the next intermission after a largely uneventful second period, until Leeds exploded into life with three goals in three minutes.

Adam Barnes’s marker from the bottom of the left circle at 37.34 was quickly followed by strikes from Zach Brooks and the in-form Jake Witkowski.

An early goal from Cole Shudra just 15 seconds into the third confirmed what everybody inside the building already knew before Perre’s miserable night was completed by bullets from Howlett and Witkowski, the first from 10 yards out in centre ice, the latter from a tight angle at the bottom of the left circle.

Elliott Lewis ‘spoiled’ the party atmosphere when he poked home past replacement netminder Harrison Walker at 54.59 but it mattered little – other than to the promising young goalie of course – as the Knights saw out the game for their fifth straight win.