Walker brace steers Blaze to victory
Brenden Walker scored twice and picked up the Man of the Match award as Genting Casino Coventry Blaze overcame Fife Flyers 6-5 at the Skydome in the Elite League.
Blaze were without captain Ashley Tait, Russell Cowley and Ross Venus, who were on Great Britain duty, but welcomed Academy product Jordan Stokes into the line-up.
Walker grabbed the go-ahead goal on the powerplay at 8.23 but Kyle Horne tied it up at 9.55 before Patrick Cullen nudged Flyers in front on the powerplay at 12.28.
Jordan Pietrus - his 18th marker of the season, assisted superbly by Boris Valabik - ensured the teams went in level at the end of the first period with a goal at 14.28.
Quick-fire second-period strikes from Walker (21.08), Brett Robinson (24.53) and Carl Lauzon (25.41 short-handed) then put Blaze in control.
Fife's Nico Sacchetti (33.09) and Blaze's Cale Tanaka (56.20) traded goals with the visitors pulling a couple back late on through Shane Stockton (58.24 powerplay and 59.57).
But Blaze held on to secure a fourth successive home win and a fourth victory in their last five matches.
"It was a gutsy effort for us to score six goals tonight, especially being shorthanded the way we were. I loved our start, I thought we really pushed the pace in the first. We got on the wrong side of some pucks as the game went on... I was happy to see the guys genuinely disappointed with giving up the 4th and 5th goal because we are pursuing this double-header like a quarter final weekend." - Head Coach, Chuck Weber
Watch the highlights courtesy of Clean Cut Sports:
"We battled, we had a short line-up and it was a great win for the guys. I'm feeling good, today took its toll on me, but I got through it and it's going to make me better for the next one." - #22 Brenden Walker
"We got the job done, alot of guys contributed and it was good to see. We battled together, it was closer than we would have liked to see but we came together and it was a bit character win for us." - #16 Jordan Pietrus