Fife Flyers: Big win, huge performance as they shut out Manchester Storm 8-0
Fife Flyers finally delivered the result, and performance, the fans had been expecting for several weeks with an 8-0 wipeout of Manchester Storm.
A night many feared after the team’s 5-0 loss to Storm in Altrincham last night turned out to be the best of the season yet.
Flyers skated with confidence and self belief, and a superb 5-0 second period, blew the hinges off this game.
The team may still need major changes - Todd Dutiaume, head coach, spoke afterwards of “several players” coming in on top of the returning Chase Schaber - but the fans finally saw the potential of a number of key players.
“We skated significantly better, looked engaged and played with a bit of a chip on our shoulder,” said the coach. “Our feet were moving.”And he added: “It was nice to see smiles on players’ faces.”
It’s been a torrid start to the season, one which saw increasing concern among fans who looked on with a mixture of frustration and despair.
Sunday gave them something to cheer, and the atmosphere rinkside was so different.
It took Flyers just four minutes to find the net with James Anderson - who buzzed all night - netting on the powerplay, and the hard working Greg Chase made it 2-0 after 10 minutes, converting one of the many rebounds which caused real problems in Storm’s defensive zone.
The second period saw Fife blow the game wide open and leave their visitors grim-faced.
Matt Carter chipped home number three at the back post, and goal four at 29:11 was an OG as a puck came off netminder Matt Ginn before Anderson had a dig, and a defenceman could do little to stop the puck rebounding off him into the net.
That was enough for Storm coach Ryan Finnerty to call a time out, but hopes of a respite were dashed when Erik Naslund showed superb strength behind and teed up a back post opening for which Craig Peacock happily took.
Ginn decided he’d had enough and headed to the bench, to be replaced by James Downie, son of former Fife netminder Colin.
By the time the second buzzer came to Storm’s rescue, they were 7-0 down.
Great work on the puck by Carson Stadnyk found Mike McNicholas, and his pass across the slot was an easy tap in for Jacob Benson at 38:38 - and there was even time for one more, courtesy of Bari McKenzie.
Some of the game’s intensity dissipated in the third - Storm clearly accepting this was now a hopeless task.
Imants Lescovs fired home a one-timer from the blue point to make it 8-0 in the last five minutes to send the fans home much happier than in recent weeks.
The trick now is to build on the win and gain some momentum – vital to moving up the league standings.
If the team can do that it will make it easier for the new skaters to step in and have an instant impact.