BRACKNELL Bees match-winner Shaun Thompson praised his side and their growing number of supporters following the 3-2 overtime win against Peterborough Phantoms last Saturday, writes Dave Wright.

Another good-sized crowd at The Hive included a packed schools' zone section, some of whom were attending their very first ice hockey game.

And they saw a real thriller with Bees equalising in the last minute to take the game into overtime, where Thompson fired home the winner.

The goal hero came off the ice to tell the News: "This was a massive win for us.

"It just wasn't about the two points, as beating another good side like Peterborough gives us a huge momentum going forward."

Bees had gone ahead in the first period through Josh Martin, only to concede two goals in a minute just after the halfway stage of the game and despite the hosts having the better of the exchanges.

But they picked themselves up and deservedly drew level through Vanya Antonov with 57 seconds left when Bees held a numerical advantage.

"I always thought we could score, especially on the power-power at the end. It gave us a good advantage especially as we had six guys out there after pulling the goalie," said Thompson, whose winner came three minutes into the extra five.

"To concede two quick goals and not drop our heads and still come away with a win is massive.

"It shows the character we have in the (changing) room."

Thompson also felt late goals "makes it interesting" for the fans and he was full of praise for the part they played on Saturday night, saying the players appreciate their support "100 per cent."

The 31-year-old forward added: "They say it's like having an extra body on the ice.

"The schools' zone has been fantastic this season, they bring extra noise every time they are here and I think that brings up the rest of the rink as well.

"Everybody kind of bonds together and they are a huge help to the team. The guys really appreciate the support we get."

Bees' next game is at Basingstoke this Saturday which means, among others, Thompson and head coach Doug Sheppard will be returning to their former club.

Bracknell, Basingstoke, Peterborough and Swindon are dominating the top-four placings in the table although Romford-based Raiders could also have a say according to Thompson.

He said: "Romford have been on a really good run and are right in the mix as well.

"It's too close to ignore anybody. It means every game is a big one for us and we cannot switch off.

"If we want to win anything this year, we have to play every game like we have."

Bees went on to win 3-2 at Milton Keynes on Sunday to complete another successful weekend.

"It's important we keep the momentum going," added Thompson.