BRACKNELL Hornets defeated Bracknell Blizzards 19-4 in a challenge game at The Hive.

National Ice Hockey League 2 Hornets were strong favourites against the recreational Blizzards side, and took the lead through Josh Ealey-Newman at 1:24.

But the large crowd quickly fell silent when Ed Grumpt equalised with a fine strike 40 seconds later.

Hornets regained the lead in the sixth minute when new signings Steven Fisher and Sean Scarbrough combined for the former to score.

The pair then showed their class as both were involved in the next four Hornets goals.

Tom Fisher also got in on the act with another Hornets goal before a Danny Hughes pass was converted by Ealey-Newman for a 7-1 lead with 15 minutes gone.

Blizzards pulled one back through Rob Gale, but Hornets made it 8-2 at the end of the first period thanks to Cam Barker.

The second period started with an excellent strike from Hornets’ Ben Ealey-Newman before Scarbrough added another just past the 25 minute mark.

That was soon followed by a delay for roughing penalties received by Ben Ealey-Newman & Blizzards’ Maros Petrovic.

Blizzards then enjoyed a decent spell but failed to beat Riche Richardson in the Hornets net.

Hornets were not so wasteful as Josh Ealey-Newman scored to complete his hat-trick, only for them to lose Carl Graham to a two-minute charging penalty, leaving them a man short.

But it was the Hornets who took full advantage and created two short-handed goals in as many minutes followed by another for Josh Ealey-Newman right on the second-period buzzer for a 14-2 lead.

Graham received another boarding penalty at the start of the third period and Blizzards quickly pulled one back when Alex Locmelis slotted past Richardson.

It took a sensation save from Blizzards netminder Joe Wiggs to deny Danny Hughes, only for the Hornets to reply with three more quick goals for 17-3.

The action was not finished there as Joe Boot grabbed Blizzards’ fourth with a great solo effort.

But Hornets had the final say of a thrilling challenge match when Tomas Gilheany and Steven Fisher both netted to add further gloss to the scoreline.

The game ended with two minor penalties both for hooking and both for Blizzards’ Shane Bujold and Boot.