SLOUGH Jets suffered a blow in their bid to win the National Ice Hockey League title this season following a 5-4 defeat after overtime against Oxford City Stars.

The Jets have not tasted defeat since the second week of the season, the last coming at Chelmsford Chieftains back in September, but Oxford ended their 24-match winning streak.

The Stars knew that nothing short of a win at the Slough Ice Arena was required to keep their title challenge alive, although they were without the injured John Dibble, Adam Harris, James Buckingham and Dom Hopkins.

Oxford took the lead when Michal Oravec and Lee Richardson combined for Josh Florey to finish.

Slough upped their game and equalised when Ryan Handisides tipped in a Luke Reynolds pass.

It was no surprise that the Jets took the lead in the second period as Handisides fired past Stars keeper Milan Ronai.

The scores were level again when Matt Lawday picked up the puck in his own half, skated at the heart of the Slough defence and fired the puck past Matthew Smital in the home goal.

Oxford dominated territory at the start of the final stanza and Tom Davis gave them the lead,before the impressive Lawday doubled the advantage after good work from Josh Oliver and Oravec.

Slough pulled a goal back with 12 minutes to go.

Lee Richardson had a great chance to restore the two-goal advantage for the Stars but his effort rattled the crossbar.

The game was tied at 4-4 with 82 seconds to go as the Jets equalised with a wrap-around effort.

The match went into sudden death overtime and defenceman Alex Staples was the unlikely goal hero for Oxford, sliding the puck past Smital for the win.

Slough Jets remain at the top of the table despite the defeat but their lead has been cut to just a single point, with six points now separating the top four.

The title is still in the hands of the Jets ahead of their trip to Peterborough Phantoms on Saturday 6th April (6.15pm).