Tie delicately poised

There is everything to play for in the second leg of the Challenge Cup quarter-final after Genting Casino Coventry Blaze and Braehead Clan tied 2-2 at the Skydome.

Captain Ash Goldie gave Clan the lead on the powerplay at 11.09 but two second-period goals saw Blaze turn it around.

Brad Leeb levelled on the powerplay at 26.21 and captain Shea Guthrie put Blaze in front at 32.36.

But former Blaze forward Robert Farmer ensured a 2-2 game at 51.16 and despite outshooting Clan 22-7 in the final period, the home side were unable to take a lead with them for the second leg in Glasgow next Tuesday.

Coach Paul Thompson said: "It was a flat game. In the first period we looked like the team who had just been on the bus for seven hours. We tweaked a few things and got behind them a lot more and deservedly went in at the end of the second 2-1 up. But in the third we had three powerplays and our execution was poor and guys went back to trying to do it all themselves.

"We would have liked to have gone up to Braehead with a lead but we won't and we need to play a lot better up there next week.

"We need a spark and we are not getting it from our best players. We are lacking a bit offensively and I am hoping to bring a new guy in who can help us. Hopefully we will announce that in the next 24 hours.

"This guy will bring us the offence we have been lacking. He has scored points wherever he has been."

Blaze take on Nottingham Panthers at the Skydomein the Rapid Solicitors Elite League Erhardt Conferenceon Saturday February 2 (7pm face-off). Tickets can be purchased by ringing the Box Office on 02476 630693 (option 0).


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