Murrayfield Racers moved a step closer to qualifying for the final of the Stuart Robertson Cup with a comprehensive 10-3 victory over Kirkcaldy Kestrels on Sunday.
The Racers fell behind after five minutes, but three quick goals by Martin Cingel, Sean Donaldson and Callum Boyd gave them a 3-1 lead at the end of the first period.
The home side put their foot on the gas in the middle session with Donaldson (2), Boyd and Michael Ireland finding the back of the net.
Graeme Allan pulled one back for the visitors in the 34th minute, but the Racers took a healthy 7-2 lead into the final period.
Ireland bagged his second of the game in the 43rd minute to restore the six-goal cushion, before Boyd joined Donaldson on a hat-trick to make it 9-2 four minutes later.
Donaldson bagged his fourth of the night as the Racers chalked up double figures for the third time this season and although Kirkcaldy pulled one back late on, the home side comfortably saw out the game.
A victory in their final eastern group game at Dundee Tigers on December 29th will send the Racers through to a two-legged final against North Ayrshire Wild.
The game also featured a Teddy Bear Toss, which the Racers hosted in conjunction with local Edinburgh charity Helping Hands.
Fans came to the rink armed with bears which they threw onto the ice when the Racers scored their first goal.
The bears were gathered up and will be distributed by Helping Hands to children’s organisations across the Edinburgh area to help them enjoy Christmas.
Murrayfield Director Willie Dunn said: “On behalf of the board and players of Murrayfield Racers we would like to thank all the fans that came along on Sunday and cheered us to victory.
“Not only was this a huge win for us in our quest to make our first final, it was also great to see all the bears hit the ice when we scored our first goal.
“Working in partnership with Edinburgh Helping Hands we know that these toys will find their way to the most deserving children in our area.
“It is unfortunate in this day and age that such acts of charity are needed, but it is also heartening that the hockey community in Edinburgh pulled together to help others at this time of year.
“We have been deeply impressed with the drive and commitment of Edinburgh Helping Hands and their core ethos and values to make sure help reaches those who need it most, not just at Christmas but all year round.
“We will no doubt be working with them again in the near future to help those who need it most.
“We are very proud of the way our fans contributed over 200 bears to children this Christmas and we hope it helps put a smile on the faces of the recipients as broad as the smiles on our players’ faces at the end of the game on Sunday.”
The Racers are back in action on Saturday as they travel to play Aberdeen Lynx in the SNL (face-off 7.00pm). They return to home ice the following day against Billingham Stars in the NIHL North Cup (face-off 6.00pm).
Tickets for the Billingham game are on sale HERE.
(Image permission: Ian Coyle)
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