Blaze blast away Lightning in third period
In the first of back-to-back games over the weekend, the Genting Casino Coventry Blaze collected a valuable two Elite League points, defeating local rivals Milton Keynes Lightning 3-6 at Planet Ice, MK.
The Blaze welcomed back British forward Ross Venus but were again without import pair Jake Hansen and Justin Hache. MK meanwhile were missing Cole Shudra and Radek Meidl.
Despite three Coventry powerplay opportunities in the opening twenty minutes, it was the home side who took a 1-0 advantage to the dressing room after period one. MK Man of the Match, Michael Fine scoring short-handed at 3.43.
After a long barren spell, Coventry finally made a chance count on the man advantage as their Man of the Match Alex Nikiforuk struck an equaliser at 23.39.
The Canadian then turned provider for Tim Crowder to score Blaze’s second powerplay goal of the night on 36.17.
With just 35 seconds left in the middle stanza, player-coach of the Lightning Tim Wallace hammered home for a score of 2-2 after 40 minutes of play.
Then came the third period blast for Blaze, scoring four unanswered. Luke Ferrara first made it 2-3 at 42.45, his fourth straight game with a goal against the Lightning. With a helper on the GB international's strike, Norwegian Nicolai Bryhnisveen grabbed an impressive third assist of the game.
Ben Lake next registered his 30th of the Elite League season to make it 2-4 on 46 minutes, with an unusual assist going to netminder Matt Hackett.
Crowder's second (48.34), followed by an empty net goal from the returning Venus at 58.38 made it 2-6 before Robbie Baillargeon bagged a consolation (58.48) for a final score of 3-6.