JAN 01] COVENTRY BLAZE MATCH REPORT ntl: CUP SEMI FINAL SECOND
Coventry Blaze 5
Guildford Flames 6
miracle failed to happen - Coventry Blaze are out of the ntl: Cup
after losing to Guildford Flames in an action-packed semi-final
script went wrong in the first few seconds. Needing an early goal to
try and recover a three-goal deficit, the Blaze found themselves
picking the puck out of the net after Karry Biette slotted home in
front of a crowded goal.
motivational fire had been poured into the Blaze to fuel their
befits their home form, they took control of the early possession
after the setback, but couldn't make anything concrete count.
from Dumas and Shewan went close without really threatening, and
urgency was only injected into the game once Hilton Ruggles went on
one of his mazy runs.
returned, Soderstrom and Samuelsson both went close from the right
hand side, but Guildford were proving excellent at getting in the
way at stopping shots being made.
afraid of the physical challenge, they were quick on the break and
managed to exploit the Blaze's hole between defence and attack.
one man can make a difference on a whole game is debatable, but
Steve Chartrandís ability to cover defence and attack was missed.
other weakness soon became apparent. Against tight marshalling near
the goal, they couldn't make the power plays count until the game
was beyond their reach.
Dumas showed once again how good an attacker he is given a run at
goal, but instead of slotting home in the first period he forced a
fantastic save out of Mark McArthur in the Guildford net.
continued into the second period. The crowd, smaller but noisier
than usual, with both sides of the arena getting involved was
finally given a reason to believe when AJ Kelham levelled the scores
just three goals needed, the Blaze started to look as if they could
do it, and started to run Guildford ragged. Verve was added, the
flowing moves returned and Kelham bagged another.
it went wrong. Irvine was controversially sent to the box and the
Flames brought the score back to 2-2.
did the damage then, and again minutes later when a snappy break saw
Guildford take the lead on the night.
only solace for the Coventry supporters was seeing the cheerleaders
trying to find a way to dance to the Great Escape.
the beginning of third period, a moment to savour, even with defeat
looming, as Dumas broke clear, nudged his way around several players
and scored a brilliant unassisted goal. He went close again shortly
after, and had he scored there might have been a glimmer of hope in
showed that the Flames were equal to the task when he beat Sjodin,
and by 49.16 the away fans' Suits You Sir banner was jigging around
once more and Lamey scored to make it 3-5.
came close again, Ruggles was sent to the box for tripping, having
retaliated after being niggled one time too many, but despite being
short-handed the Blaze showed they had pride when Kelham scored on
the break for his hat trick.
is hard to come by when trophies are at stake and Biette rounded off
a fine flowing move by Guildford to score yet again. With seconds
remaining Tom Watkins grabbed another goal to make the final total
entertainment was good, but the Blaze need to learn to win when it
counts if they are going to end up with some silverware this season.
scores : 0-1/2-2/3-3
minutes : 8-10 (Blaze: Irvine 4, Dumas 2, Ruggles 2)
on goal : 42-28
: Andy Carson
: Kelham 3+0; Dumas 1+0; Watkins 1+0; Johnson 0+3; Samuelsson 0+3;
Twaite 0+1. Net -
: Biette 4+0; R.Campbell 1+1; Lamey 1+1; DeCosty 0+3; Dixon 0+2;
Crawford 0+1; Crombie 0+1; Jennings 0+1; Plant 0+1.
Net - McArthur 42/5