Elite League play-off
Semi-final first leg
Poole 47 Lynn 43
After seeing his side miss out on a place in the Elite League Play-off Grand Final, King’s Lynn Stars boss Rob Lyon says his side has had a great season.
In the play-off semi first leg at the Norfolk Arena the Stars slipped to a narrow one-point defeat to reigning champions Poole, but also lost Lewis Kerr after he injured his hand.
On the fourth attempt at running the second leg in tricky wet conditions on Thursday, Lynn remained within touching distance of the hosts up until Heat 10 when a retirement from Rory Schlein while in a point scoring position handed the home side a crucial heat advantage.
On his captain’s retirement, Lyon said: “The two engine failures unfortunately for Rory cost us.
“He was in scoring positions and that would have put us through. Fair play to Poole. They did a job and nicked it.
A deciding Heat 14 ended in favour of the home side.
“You do need a little bit of luck to win something and we certainly didn’t have any of it tonight,” said Lyon.
“But that’s the way it goes. It’s tough. Maybe it’s our time next year. We’ve had a great season.
“The supporters of the club should be proud of what we’ve achieved and proud to be supporters of this club. Injuries are the only thing that stopped us winning it in my opinion but they are part of parcel and the sport and you just have to get on with it.”
Roger Warnes Transport Stars skipper Schlein said: “I couldn’t have asked any more from the boys. The guests were also great.
“It was a mechanical failure which we only noticed at the end. An electrical wire broke and you could hardly see it. It was shorting out on the frame.
“I thought we were in a pretty good position to fight back from being six points down after the first two races.
“I think we had really started to worry them. With a full one-to-seven with both sides I still think we would have won.”
Lynn needed a two-point win on the night and up until Heat 13, they stood a chance of doing that.
The meeting was a close one with the wet track proving to be a leveller.
Early heat advantages for the home side put the Pirates in control, but the Stars worked their way back into the meeting with 4-2 race advantages in Heats 6 and 9.
A 4-2 for the Pirates in Heat 10 put the Stars two points behind on the night and three points on aggregate. Despite the best efforts of Rob Lyon’s men, they couldn’t find a race advantage in the final five races.
Heat 13 saw the Stars’ chances of making the final ended with Kenneth Bjerre only able to split the home pair.
Pirates: Kyle Newman 11+1, Maciej Janowski 9+1, Edward Kennett (guest) 8, Przemyslaw Pawlicki 8, Danny King (G) 6+1, Troy Batchelor (G) 4+1, Brendan Johnson (G) 1.
Stars: Chris Harris (G) 11+1, Jason Garrity (G) 11+1, Kenneth Bjerre 7, Robert Lambert 5+1, Rory Schlein 4+1, Stuart Robson (G) 3, Simon Lambert 2+1.