Fife Flyers look for win to end long season on a positive note

The curtain comes down on the 2021-22 ice hockey season and, for Fife Flyers’ fans, it cannot come soon enough.

Thursday, 14th April 2022, 12:42 pm

A long, and at times difficult season, ends with three games in three nights this weekend.

Flyers cross the Tay to face Dundee Stars on Friday night, before heading along the M8 on Saturday to meet Glasgow Clan.

But, the final action of the season takes place on home ice at Fife Ice Arena with a return game against Clan.

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Flyers celebrate their recent win over Dundee (Pic: Derek Black)

Eight months and 54 games since hitting the ice for the first time since lockdown, it’ll all be over, and Flyers need to sign off with a flourish to avoid the wooden spoon.

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They need to make a clean sweep of the points to have any hope of avoiding finishing in last place for a second season - they were in tenth place when the 2019-20 season was curtailed by the pandemic - and, even then, they need Manchester Storm, in ninth, to drop points.

The post-mortems on the season will follow in due course - and there is much to chew over - but the focus this weekend will remain firmly on the ice.

Their Scottish rivals have both made the post-season play-offs and have much to play for, but Fife need to finish on a positive note to give the fans something to cheer.

Todd Dutiaume, head coach, made it clear in his post-game analysis after Sunday these are not dead games.

He said: “The guys are not only playing for jobs in Fife next year, but jobs anywhere.

“Every shift and performance can be watched and it is important they showcase themselves until the end of the year.

“Any professional knows you go out there until your employment, and go and play hard.

“You don’t go into games half disengaged - that’s when you get injured.

“You go fully committed - that’s what we will be asking our guys to do.”

That message was underlined by Jeff Hutchins, post-game on Saturday after a poor loss to Stars.

“Ultimately, put some effort in. The score is the score, but the effort is the underlying key,” he said.

“They are not only playing for themselves and the pride, but the for fans who have supported us all year long.”