Coach’s Corner

Two big points in Invicta.

This weekend we only had one game and it was in Invicta, a place we hardly ever win. We once again shot out to a three goal lead only to win by the seat of our pants 5-4. It is no surprise Invicta came back late in the game, this has been our problem all season and if we want to make it to the play off finals, we are going to have to learn how to close out games. I tend to never look back at games in which we have won, but for us to give up another three goal lead, it’s hard not to.

We came out flying and played fantastic for the first half of the match and even though they had a backup in net, he played well once he found his feet. I still think Invicta has one of the most talented group of top six forwards in the league, and they showed there class during the second half of the game when we let them control the puck and skate through us.

I was hoping Romford was going to do us a favour and beat Chelmsford on Sunday, but it wasn’t meant to be. They hammered them and once again have shown why they are the best team in the league. They have been consistent for almost the whole season and if we had shown that consistency, we would have had the league tied up about two weeks ago. When I look back at the games we shouldn’t have lost or drawn it frustrates me, but that’s the way the game works sometimes. I also find it frustrating when I look at how we gave up some of the points, it wasn’t for a lack of effort, it usually was a silly mistake we made (myself included) that resulted in a goal against that cost us a point, or two.

Looking ahead we have Bracknell this Saturday at home, if we win this it secures us second seed heading into the playoffs. I want to make sure the guys are playing the best of our ability heading into the playoffs and we are going to make some changes this week in training to make sure we are prepared. I like our group, we only lost once so far on home ice in the league and I think that’s an accomplishment in itself. We won the Southeast Cup over current first place Chelmsord and looking at our rosters we have added many new faces compared to Chelmo and Romford. It just goes to show the commitment our guys have shown this season, learning to play Raiders hockey isn’t the easiest for new guys coming in and they have all shown that they are here for the right reasons.

This week’s training is going to be changed up a little bit, tomorrow ee are going to be working on a new system and defensive zone coverage and I hope by working on these two things we can figure out why we have been giving up these leads and get it sorted for the weekend.

Come down to the rink for our last league game of the season and support the guys, it would be a big plus if we had a massive crowd heading into the play-offs.

See you Saturday,

JC

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