Special teams again the difference as Blaze defeated
Special teams were the difference again for the Genting Casino Coventry Blaze as the Manchester Storm fired three powerplay goals on their way to a 1-4 victory at the Skydome Arena.
The Blaze went ahead in the game, meaning the fans in attendance were given the chance to ‘Air the Bear’, throwing hundreds of soft toys on to the ice in support of Free Radio’s Mission Christmas (Cash for Kids).
The goal was scored by man-of-the-match Ross Venus with assists going to Chris Pohlkamp and Dillon Eichstadt at 5.21.
Manchester’s first powerplay goal came at 8.20 as their Captain Dallas Ehrhardt converted a loose puck at the back-post to tie the game at one.
Despite losing in-form Luke Ferrara, who joined David Clements and Janne Laakkonen on the injury list for Blaze, the home side created several chances 5-on-5, but Matt Ginn in the Storm net denied time and time again.
On the back of their goalie’s strong play, the Storm took a 1-2 lead at 33.40 as Layne Ulmer’s re-direct from a Mario Puskarich shot found a way into the Blaze net.
Ulmer again at 56.46 all but put an end to Coventry’s hopes of taking anything out of the game, registering another time on the man advantage, assisted by man-of-the-match Puskarich.
With Jamie Phillips pulled from the Blaze goal for the extra skater, Puskarich completed the scoring, and his three-point haul, with an empty net marker at 58.21 giving a final score of 1-4.
Head Coach Danny Stewart said, “Special teams were the difference plain and simple. We created a lot 5-on-5 but credit to Manchester as we didn’t get to many second pucks. We’ve gone from second in the league on the penalty-kill to conceding 10 in the last 4 games and it’s an area that is hurting us right now.”