Stewart leads Blaze to Altrincham victory
A 30 shot shut-out and Man of the Match performance from the outstanding Brian Stewart helped the Genting Casino Coventry Blaze snap a four game losing streak, defeating Manchester Storm 0-2 in Altrincham.
Blaze went into the game at full strength, welcoming back British forward Ross Venus, who missed last Sunday’s clash with Cardiff Devils through suspension.
The Storm without Patrik Valcak and Eric Neilson came the closest in the opening period. Outshooting Coventry 10-4, the puck bobbling agonisingly wide of Brian Stewart’s net on a couple of occasions and Mario Trabucco missing a wide open net.
The Blaze though came out strong in the middle twenty minutes, taking the lead through Captain Jordan Pietrus (to be corrected on game-sheet), his 10th of the year at 30.58.
The second half of the middle period ended up being a stop-start affair as referee Steve Brown handed out numerous minor penalties to both teams, Blaze and going 1/6 on the powerplay over the night, Storm 0/6.
In the third and final period, led by Brian Stewart between the pipes and further strong penalty killing efforts, Blaze held firm. Canadian forward Brett Robinson finally sealing the game with an empty-net goal for 0-2, assisted by Barry Almeida and T.J Syner at 59.52.
Head Coach Danny Stewart said,"It was a good bounce back from the guys tonight. We competed all night in all areas and limited our mistakes. We defended better than we have all season and Stewy stopped the pucks he needed to. It was a good all-round game."