Back-to-back defeats for struggling Coventry Blaze - The Rugby Observer

Back-to-back defeats for struggling Coventry Blaze

Rugby Editorial 2nd Nov, 2016 Updated: 3rd Nov, 2016   0

ICE HOCKEY: FOUR goals in the opening six minutes denied Coventry Blaze any chance of earning points last weekend as the Skydome outfit endured another miserable weekend.

Without the services of Ashley Tait, Russ Cowley or star netminder Brian Stewart – who was recovering from concussion after taking a knock on Saturday night in Sheffield – the Blaze struggled in the opening period.

It took Sheffield less than three minutes to record their first goal as Christopher Bjorkland’s shot from far out beat Marr to his left side on the powerplay.

John Armstrong scored his first of the night just seconds later before adding a second of his own – and a third for the Steelers – at 5.47 which was followed by markers from Markus Nilsson and Mattieu Roy.

Two of the sport’s heavyweights then dropped the gloves as Garrett Klotz and Zack Fitzgerald traded blow – Fitzgerald taken off the ice to repair a badly cut nose.

Robin Bergman earned Coventry their only goal of the night shortly into the second period, though Sheffield added their sixth at 39.28 as Armstrong earned his hat-trick.

Blaze’s latest loss comes as their seventh loss in their last eight games – and head coach Danny Stewart admitted confidence in the locker room isn’t great.

He said: “We came out with energy on Sunday but I didn’t want the fixture to turn into a ten, 11 or 12 against game – that’s something we or the fans don’t need.

“Brian (Stewart) is our best player on the ice so when you lose your best player it’s obviously going to have an effect.

“For most part of the game Renny (Marr) did a good job for us, it’s tough getting thrown in there as a young kid still developing.

“Taylor (Carnevale) has done a good job for us so far, he had another assist tonight which gives him six in five games.

“He’s creative on the puck and that’s what we brought him in for, we gave up a bit of defensive play in Darcy Zajac but Taylor is doing a great job in the face-off zone – he’s over 60 per cent which is key.”

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