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New Ice Hockey Side Off To Blazing Start

MK Kings 4 - 7 Coventry Blaze
Guildford Flames 1 - 1 Coventry Blaze
Coventry Blaze 8 - 2 Slough Jets

Coventry Blaze have got off to a hectic but flying start to the season, and look likely to make it through their first major test.

A five point haul from three games in four days has left the Blaze looking very likely to qualify for the second round of the Benson & Hedges competition. They are currently in second place in Group D of the B&H.

The top team in the group will go on to face a Superleague opponent in a single game "Challenge Round" on the BNL team's ice.

The winners of the "Challenge Round" games move on into the Benson & Hedges Cup proper facing all the Superleague clubs.

The losers return to the Benson & Hedges Plate competition and face the second place team from the qualifying round groups in home and away semi-final series.

The final will be held at Sheffield Arena in early December.

The Blaze ground out an important victory in Milton Keynes last Thursday, overcoming a number of minor injuries to key players to record a 7-4 win over the Kings.

This was followed by a fantastic performance on Saturday night in Guildford. The Flames are the bookies favourites for all the honours this season, but were given a lesson in disciplined defensive hockey.

The Blaze took the lead in the eighth minute through Hilton Ruggles and retained that lead until a disputed penalty shot was awarded in the fiftieth minute.

The Flames equalised and then applied pressure to the Blaze goal, but a fine performance from Henrik Sjodin kept the Guildford team at bay.

Sunday night saw the Blaze give another disciplined performance to beat the Basingstoke Bison at the Skydome in Coventry.

The 4-2 win was another display of great character by the tiring Blaze team. New signing Simon Hunt picked up two goals, with Steve Chartrand and Mathias Soderstrom getting the others.

There is no let-up in the schedule in the coming week with the Blaze facing Milton Keynes at the Skydome tonight, then travelling to Slough to face the Jets on Saturday before returning to Coventry on Sunday for the eagerly awaited return clash with Guildford Flames.

This could be the game that decides the Group D winners and should be a great game.

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CWN / Sport / Ice Hockey / Coventry Blaze  / 15 Aug 00

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM