Fife Flyers: time to cut out mistakes orders coach ahead of Coventry Blaze test
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Flyers were 5-2 down and facing a zero point weekend when they tied the game with 12 seconds left on the clock, and then won in a sudden death penalty shoot out in which Johan Erikkson netted twice. They have already won in the Midlands - a 6-4 win on the opening day of the league campaign - and a sweep of the points would leave Blaze at the foot of thew table, while pushing Flyers firmly into the middle of the pack.
Key forward Teemu Pulkinnen is set to make his return from injury after missing the last four games, giving Coolen a full roster to choose from - and options over who will be this weekend’s healthy scratches.
Midweek training saw the team working on systems as well as conditioning as the coach looked to eradicate the mistakes which have seen some games, and points, slip through the team’s gloves.
“We have to play smart” he said. “Hockey is a game of small mistakes - a bit like chess where if you make the wrong move you lose. We have to reduce our mistakes. I see things we need to work on training and that’s what we will do.”
Coolen highlighted issues of turning the puck over and making the wrong choices at key moments in games which all had a direct impact on the final score.
“We were tied 2-2 at Nottingham with three minutes to play. We could have slowed it down and taken the point and gone to overtime, but we turned the puck over instead of digging in. At Glasgow we were three goals down, but you can come back from that. Score one and that changes the game completely - I was really pleased with the win. It showed a lot of character.”
He is looking to Flyers to deliver again on the road to Coventry on Saturday before returning to Fife Ice Arena for Sunday’s rematch (face-off 5:15pm)
> Off the ice, Flyers fans can dig deep to support two big appeals in the town. The Supporters Club has organised its annual foodbank appeal for Saturday, December 2, and its traditional toy appeal for Sunday, December 10.