Sheffield Steelers must end Coventry Blaze hoodoo

Brian Stewart keeping goal for Coventry Blaze, at Sheffield.

Brian Stewart keeping goal for Coventry Blaze, at Sheffield.

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Title-chasing Sheffield Steelers are aiming to put an end to a miserable run of results against their bogey side tomorrow night.

Paul Thompson’s side have lost their last six games against his former team, Coventry Blaze, in a series which dates back to the first week in December. All the defeats had one factor in common: Steelers outshot their opponents. On one occasion they had 48 shots repelled.

You could mount an argument that Blaze goalie Brian Stewart is the main reason why Steelers aren’t more than two points ahead on top of the Elite League. The six feet five inches Canadian just loves stopping Steelers.

In those six games, Tyler Mosienko and Levi Nelson have failed to score and Mathieu Roy only beat him once.

At the other end of the ice Brett Robinson forward - this week’s EIHL Player of the Week - has netted four of their six wins.

Steelers host Coventry after tonight’s trip to Nottingham Panthers, which gives Sheffield the first chance of revenge since their heavy Challenge Cup semi final shut-out defeats to them.

They will meet a Nottingham side tonight that will feel like a wounded animal after losing 6-1 to Coventry Blaze, midweek.

Notts coach Corey Neilson said a better performance was essential after being “dominated in every aspect you can imagine.”

n Cardiff Devils player-coach Andrew Lord admits his team were ‘devastated’ after losing the Challenge Cup final. But he said a week of re-building sees the team ready to take on the challenge of winning five games - a feat which would see them pip rivals to the championship. Devils have lost their last four games, scoring just three times, but remain two points behind Sheffield with a game in hand. “We have let teams back in the race, we had a fairly firm grip on it two weeks ago. It is amazing how fast things can change in hockey” said Lord.

He added Devils have to pick themselves up with “great, physical hockey” for the remaining games with Belfast Giants, (three) Manchester Storm and Nottingham.

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