ON their previous visit to The Hive, Hull Pirates had been thrown overboard in an 8-3 thrashing, but when they sailed back into Bracknell on Sunday they took revenge with a 3-1 victory, writes Dave Wright.

And that came 24 hours after hammering the same opposition 6-0 in a hastily re-arranged home game.

So it was certainly a weekend to forget for Bees who now find themselves bottom of the table following Manchester’s withdrawal from the league.

With Phoenix’s record expunged, Bees have gone from 19 points from 43 games to 13 from 38, losing 20 goals in the process.

They are left as the only team outside the play-offs, nine points adrift of Sheffield.

Bees forward Carl Thompson commented: “If you ask any fan, they will probably say we’ve got no chance of making the play-offs, but we have got to believe in ourselves.

“There are 10 games left, so anything is possible, but we need to show the same form as we did in those games we’ve won.

“If we do, then we can give teams a run for their money. It is just finding that bit of luck, showing that passion. We will be doing everything we can to make it happen, that’s all we can do.”

In the two clashes with sixth-placed Hull, Bees were let down once again by their lack of goal power.

Twenty-eight shots failed to produce a goal on Humberside, while on Sunday they managed only one goal from 35 attempts.

Hull had 10 fewer attempts, yet still managed nine goals over the two days.

On several occasions, the puck was only inches away from the net, but among a flurry of flying sticks and players falling to the ice, the Pirates managed to defend their lines with recent signing Vlastimil Lakosil making excellent saves.

At the other end, it was Lee Bonner who stole the honours, netting five during the weekend.

His first two came inside the opening 11 minutes on Saturday with Jordan Fisher making it 3-0 shortly afterwards.

Andrej Themar netted on 31:24 before Bonner completed his hat-trick three minutes later.

Bees switched net-minders, with Alex Mettam giving way to Matt Smital and the youngster was only beaten once in the final period, and that was by Themar. He also secured his team’s player of the match award.

Josh Smith and Scott Spearing, both with knee problems, missed the game, but the latter returned to action on Sunday.

He added some aggression to their play, but Bees struggled to get into any sort of rhythm in a rather tame first period.

Their hopes of gaining swift revenge were all but over inside the opening 10 minutes, during which Themar and Bonner both found the back of the net.

The in-form Bonner, who had also assisted in the first goal, made it 3-0 on 22:55.

Bees never gave up and created further chances, while Rio Grinnel-Parke was only denied by an outstanding save from Lakosil.

The hosts’ best period of the match came in the final period and they secured a deserved consolation goal on 55:52 from David Gaborcik with Luka Basic and Shaun Thompson providing the assists.

Carl Thompson received Bees’ best player award at the end of a game that was sponsored by Newsquest Berkshire.

“It was nice to get the award, but disappointed we didn’t win as that’s the main thing.”

Bees are without a home fixture this weekend, but go to Swindon on Sunday (5.45pm) with the match having been brought forward from next Wednesday.

l BRACKNELL’S Brayden Smith has been named as the reserve forward for the England national under-13 squad.