Match report

Remarkable turnaround seals Blaze first win

Blaze 6
v
Panthers 5

Four goals in ten minutes ensured Genting Casino Coventry Blaze earned a remarkable 6-5 victory against rivals Nottingham Panthers for their first game of the 2016/17 season.

Goals from Robin Bergman, Matt Marquardt, Bjorn Bombis and skipper Jordan Pietrus left Panthers coach Corey Neilson near speechless as the Blaze came from three goals down to steal victory from the jaws of defeat mid-way through the third period.

The Panthers boosted by a hat-trick from former Blaze forward Robert Farmer looked in control of the clash with the Brit scoring what seemed to be the put-away goal for the Panthers as they went 5-2 up with less than 18 minutes remaining.

However, a remarkable turnaround saw Blaze hit four goals past Nottingham netminder Dan Green in just ten minutes.

Earlier in the game, new import Matt Marquardt was credited with a first goal which rebounded in the net off the pads of ex-Blaze forward Chris Lawrence after 12 minutes in front of a strong home crowd.

Goaltender Brian Stewart pulled off several crucial saves, three shots of which were fired by Panthers forward Logan Macmillan who endured a frustrating opening period.

The Panthers responded towards the end of the first period on the powerplay as Andy Sertich made no mistake from the blue-line to break Stewart’s unstoppable run.

A scrappy start to the second period saw Corey Neilson’s men take the lead for the first time as former Blaze man Robert Farmer batted home a bobbling puck.

With both teams changing their starting goalie for the final period, a flurry of goals were scored past Blaze's Renny Marr and Panthers' Dan Green in back and forth action as the Panthers went 5-2 up.

Blaze Head Coach Danny Stewart called a time-out and his side came out firing as they sent the Skydome crowd into raptures with four goals in ten minutes to seal a 6-5 victory.

Stewart said post-game, "It was always going to be a messy game but what I liked about tonight was our fight back. The guys went right to the end and it was good to see that we had life some life left down the stretch.... We scored in different ways and I think that's what you need to do to have success in this league."

Listen to the full interview with Danny Stewart:

#28 Matt Marquardt

"We showed our character. We rallied around Renny and he didn't get down on himself or give up on us and he played a heck of a game down the stretch.... I don't think I've ever been part of an exhibiton game like that with so many fans and so much noise. I'm really excited to get the regular season going and blow the roof off of it."

 

#30 Renny Marr

"The first couple of minutes were a bit shaky but luckily the guys managed to pull me out of it, but I bounced back and made some big saves. It was good to get on the ice and shake the rust off."

 

#74 Liam Stewart following his egging from Scorch

"Klotzy came around and smashed one in my eye but it's all fun and games. It was an awesome atmosphere. It was a good pace and luckily we came back and won it."

Highlights courtesy Clean Cut Sports