The goals will come for Sheffield Steelers forward Jordan Owens

Tom Barrasso has delivered a vote of confidence in Canadian forward Jordan Owens, who has been suffering bad luck in front of goal for Sheffield Steelers.

Owens hasn't scored for 13 games, although he has worked hard and assisted on six goals throughout that time.

Jordan Owens gets to the net. Pic by Derek Black

Jordan Owens gets to the net. Pic by Derek Black

And the coach is more than satisfied with what the experienced winger and his linemates Robert Dowd and Josh Pitt have been doing, recently.

"They are pretty solid in the defensive zone, they are definitely generating offence" said Barrasso.

"I think his game has improved dramatically, it is the buy-in to what we are trying to do as a group that has been great. We have got him killing penalties, he is a valuable member of the PK unit, and I honestly like his five on five game.

"He might not be putting pucks in the net right now but I am pretty confident with the same work ethic that is going to happen."

Steelers

Steelers

Steelers play the second leg of the Challenge Cup quarter final next week, after tying the first leg 4-4 on Wednesday. Asked whether the Cup had become a more appealing target, given Steelers' sixth place in the Elite division - they have been landlocked in that slot for the past few weeks - Barrasso replied: "We are trying to win a trophy, so we will stay focused on that.

"At the end of the day, every game for us is treated the same regardless of whether it is a cup game or its a league game."

The coach added that Anthony DeLuca, a Steeler forward whose fitness he had queried recently, appears “he is working harder at it” (conditioning.) 

Barrasso admired the energy of his line with Brandon Whistle and Kieron Brown.

Sheffield return to the Arena ice against next-to-bottom Coventry Blaze, who beat Nottingham Panthers 4-3 in overtime last Sunday.

Having won just two out of their last five home games, and having been reliant on late goals, so often, Steelers need to put in a commanding performance.

*Charity fund-raisers will play a "Christmas Classic" game at iceSheffield on Friday, December 28 (7.15pm.) Steelers legend Ron Shudra will coach one of the teams. And singer Lucy Milburn, from The Voice, will be guest VIP. Adults: £. Kids: £2.