Watkins happy with Tigers' cup campaign despite loss.
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Telford Tigers head coach Tom Watkins is happy with his side's Spring Cup campaign - despite falling to a third defeat against Sheffield Steeldogs. While the Tigers have had to settle for the runners-up spot in their first ice hockey action since the coronavirus pandemic shut down the sport last year, Sheffield have run away with the title by winning all 11 of their matches to date. But Watkins feels his side could have dented the Steeldogs' perfect record if they had been just a touch more clinical. He said: "It was a good game of hockey but it was a tough loss on the night for the team. "We played with lots of commitment and at 4-4 in the third I think we hit two or three posts, which obviously changes the game. "Clinically, Sheffield were sharper and in Liam Kirk they had a player who I think was the difference between the teams. "I'm really pleased with how we've approached all these games. Hopefully, we can round out the competition with a win on Saturday." Sheffield opened the scoring with their first chance of note through competition top scorer Liam Kirk - only for the Tigers equalise on a Steeldogs power play through Jason Silverthorn. Sheffield stepped up the pace and scored two quick goals through Lake and Stanislav Lascek, but David Clements and Austin Mitchell-King brought it back to 3-3. Kirk's second of the game restored Sheffield's lead, but Telford went into the final period of the game level when brilliant play by Robert Lachowicz set up Clements to score his second of the game. Tigers started the third period well with Dan Mitchell hitting the post and Kieran Brown hitting the crossbar, but Sheffield netted three times late on for a 7-4 triumph.