Flyers braced for ‘crazy week’

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FIFE Flyers will bid to climb off the foot of the Elite League table during a gruelling week of ice hockey.

Fresh from their result of the season so far – a stunning road point in Nottingham on Sunday – Flyers face four key games in five days starting with a trip across the Irish Sea to face league leaders Belfast Giants tomorrow (Friday).

The squad return to Scotland to tackle Braehead Clan in Glasgow on Saturday, before Nottingham Panthers travel to Kirkcaldy on Sunday. And after a single days rest on Monday, Flyers will drag themselves back into Fife Ice Arena to play Hull Stingrays on Tuesday night.

Flyers are currently three points adrift of Dundee Stars at the bottom of the EIHL table but player-coach Todd Dutiaume views the upcoming run of games as a chance to peg them back.

“It’s a crazy week for us, against some exceptional teams, but there are eight points up for grabs, and we need to collect some of them,” said player-coach Todd Dutiaume.

“We’ve talked about not getting cut adrift at the bottom so every point we get right now is crucial.”

Dutiaume is hoping to add to his roster ahead of the weekend by signing another defenceman – but at the time of going to print he was still locked in negotiations.

“The process is taking longer than I’d hoped,” he said. “It’s just a case of getting guys agreed on terms.

“Will we have a guy in for the weekend? Maybe - maybe not, but I’ll be disappointed if we don’t.”

Flyers confidence levels were given a timely boost in Nottingham as they held the league’s top scorers to a 2-2 draw to claim a point before losing on penalty shots.

Netminder Garrett Zemlak stole the show making 74 saves from 76 shots.

Dutiaume said: “There was a lot of one-way traffic – more than I would have liked – but sometimes when you have a hot netminder you can grind out a result.

“It was one of those night where it didn’t look like anything would get past him. It was an exceptional performance.

“We can’t rely so heavily on one guy all the time, but there were other positives to take from it.

“It’s not going to be the magic wand that suddenly turns our fortunes around, but it something to build on.”

Flyers are without injured duo Willie Nicolson and Ian Bowie for upcoming games.