Sunday, 21 September 2008
Edinburgh scorers: Hurtubise, Cingel
MOM: Stingrays- Troy Neumeier, Edinburgh- Taylor Christie
The Stingrays absent list remains at three (Kozak, Bernier and Koulikov) after Paul Moran successfully returned to action in the 2-0 loss to the Coventry Blaze following a dislocated shoulder.
Saturday, 20 September 2008
Friday, 19 September 2008
The EIHL have released the following press release:
"The Elite Ice Hockey League after further review of the findings of the Disciplinary Committees and Appeal Committee today released the outcome of the cases involving Rick Kozak, Hull Stingrays, and Brad Voth, Cardiff Devils.Therefore Stingray Kozak, who played last weekend against Belfast pending an appeal, will have to sit it out for 10 games with a further 10 games sitting over his head. Contrary to some theories it is thought that the Stingrays management see Kozak as an integral part of their team this season, and therefore will stick by him during the ten game ban.
The 2008/09 hockey season commenced with significant suspensions being issued to the above players as a consequence of incidents during the first weekend games involving Nottingham Panthers v Hull Stingrays and Cardiff Devils v Sheffield Steelers on Sunday 7th September.
The outcome is that Rick Kozak is suspended with immediate effect for 10 games. Should he be involved in a similar incident during the current season he would automatically serve an additional suspension of 10 games.
Brad Voth is immediately suspended for 12 games and again should a similar incident occur in the current season he would automatically serve an additional suspension of 12 games.
Ice Hockey is an extremely fast and physical sport, which has been played in the UK for over 100 years. An integral part of the sport is the use of enforcers and consequently fights do occur. Fans in the UK have always enjoyed supporting their player in the event of an altercation during a game.
The league has regulations in place for dealing with any incident of when two willing combatants engage in fighting. The league however also has regulations designed to safeguard all players in the form of a suspension tariff, should any player act in an unwarranted manner.
The suspension tariff’s were established by the club coaches and accepted by the league without alteration.
League Chairman Eamon Convery advised, “No one wishes to see player’s suspended, however if a player acts in a manner which is contrary to the league regulations they will find themselves subjected to disciplinary action. These are stiff suspensions, which ought to act as a clear warning to players, coaches and clubs. ”“The message is simple, play hard and fair in accordance with the rules and normal standards and everyone will enjoy the hockey season. However act in a manner that is unacceptable and you will be punished. In addition the current processes need to reviewed, which has already commenced, with a view to making recommendations when the clubs meet on 7th October”. "
He will miss the following games:
There is good news however, two pieces of good news infact. That comes in the form of injured defenceman Paul Moran, who has returned to training following a 3 week layoff after sustaining a dislocated shoulder in pre-season action against the Sheffield Steelers. Moran will most likely be brought back into action earlier than expected after the departure of Bernier, who, wait for it this is the second piece of good news....is paying for his own flight back to North America. The Stingray owners Mike and Sue Pack must be delighted.
On a more serious note, with the subtraction of Bernier, a tough Stingrays side might, just might be able to sign a better player in his place. It remains to be seen, but the search for a replacement defenceman began immediately after Bernier handed in his notice today (Friday).
Of course this is not the first time the Rays have fallen foul to a CHL (Central Hockey League) player quitting the team after gaining match fitness in Europe with the Rays before returning to North America. Bernier follows in the, considerably larger and more skilled, footsteps of Craig Minard and Scott Wray. Two Stingray standouts and two players who returned to the minor leagues in the USA after a matter of weeks in the UK.
Bernier doing what he, apparently, did best
Stingrays co-owner Sue Pack had this to say to the Hull Daily Mail:
"Jon came into training and announced he'd got an AHL contract and that he'd booked his flight for Saturday and was flying home.""You put an awful lot of effort into getting guys in, so you are always disappointed. But experience has taught us that if players don't want to be here and want to leave then it's not worth wasting your breath over trying to persuade them to stay. Besides, when a guy says' I've booked a flight for tomorrow' it's pretty much a done deal."
Thursday, 18 September 2008
Sunday 21st September: Edinburgh Capitals v Excel Hull Stingrays@ Murrayfield Ice Rink, f/o ?
Wednesday 24th September: Excel Hull Stingrays v Edinburgh Captials@ Hull Arena, f/o 7.30pm
EIHL Head to Head
v Coventry Blaze
Overall wins: Coventry 10-2 Stingrays
Wins @Hull Arena: Coventry 5-1 Stingrays
Total Goals for: Coventry 46-21 Stingrays
Overall wins: Edinburgh 9-5 Stingrays
Wins @ Edinburgh: Edinburhg 6-2 Stingrays
Wins @ Hull Arena: Edinburgh 3-3 Stingrays, 1 draw
Total Goals for: Edinburgh 69-36 Stingrays
Players to watch
Stingrays: Jeff Glowa (3+0)
Coventry: Adam Calder (4+4)
Edinburgh: Taylor Christie (1+3)
Stingrays: L L L L
Coventry: W W L L
Edinburgh: W L L L
Stingrays- Paul Moran (recovering from a dislocated shoulder), Rick Kozak (suspended)
Edinburgh- Shawn Germain (returned home for personal reasons), John Dolan (returned to play for Dundee)
Stingrays 3- 5Coventry
Edinbrugh 2-3 Stingrays
Stingrays 4-2 Edinbrugh
Monday, 15 September 2008
After an altercation with Nottinghams Marc Levers, Kozak left Levers needing 20 stitches to his forehead before he skated through the blood on his way to the dressing room after receiving a game penalty for his actions.
He missed Saturdays 6-1 loss in Cardiff due to the game penalty however an appeal was launched in time for him to play in the 4-1 loss to the Belfast Giants at the Hull Arena. Kozak showed plenty of endeavour in the Stingrays fourth consecutive loss however ultimately a lack of discipline killed the Stingrays as they conceded three powerplay goals from ten powerplay attempts that the Rays handed to Belfast, with Jake Riddle taking five, and ten minutes, of those penalties.
Coach Rick Strachan was left disappointed with the teams indiscipline so far this season:
"When we stick to our system and stay disciplined we are a good hockey team, but you have to do it for 60 minutes. The guys had better learn real quick that if you take penalties you are not going to win. We face Coventry on Saturday and they've got just as good a powerplay as Belfast have."Meanwhile he had this to say about the £2000 appeal for Kozak:
"We're appealing because we think the penalty was too severe - end of story. That's all I can say at the moment."Whilst Kozak was left ruing his actions and the ban:
"I think it was a bit harsh, but I've got no control over that. I'll leave that to the coach and organisation to appeal. I feel I've let my team-mates down. I don't really want to be out that many games, I've come here to play hockey and being suspended doesn't help."The Stingrays move on to the seasons third weekend pointless, and with just 7 goals scored so far this season they will have to solve both their chronic inability to score and their indiscipline if they wish to take any points from next weekend. On Saturday they face the EIHL champion Coventry Blaze, who will be reeling after two losses this weekend against Sheffield and Cardiff, whilst on Sunday they face an Edinburgh side with just a surprise victory over Sheffield to their name, and with a real chance at taking at least a point away.
Sunday, 14 September 2008
Belfast scorers: Shields, Martin, Thornton, Cheverie
Rick Kozak has been given clearance to play in today's game v Belfast Giants, pending an appeal against a 10 match ban imposed following last weekend's game against Nottingham.This means that his 10 game ban will be pushed back by at least one game, if not three, if the appeal isn't heard by next weekends games.
Saturday, 13 September 2008
- Stingrays scorers: Jeff Glowa
- Cardiff scorers: Mike Hartwick, Mike Prpich, Derek Campbell, Jason Stone, Derek Campbell and Jason Silverthorn
- Kostadine and MacIver dropped the gloves
Thursday, 11 September 2008
Sunday 14th September: Excel Hull Stingrays v Belfast Giants @ Hull Arena 6pm
Overall: 14 games, 7 Stingray wins, 7 Cardiff wins
@ Cardiff: 7 games, 4 Stingray wins, 2 Cardiff wins.
Goals for: Stingrays 31, Cardiff 33
Overall: 12 games, 10 Belfast wins, 2 Stingray wins
@ Hull: 5 Belfast wins, 1 Stingray win
Goals for: Stingrays 23, Belfast 38
Players to watch
Stingrays- Matt Reynolds
Cardiff- Rod Hinks
Belfast- Dave Phillips
L L L L
W W L L
W W W W
Rick Kozak- Serving 10 game ban
Paul Moran- Out 1/2 weeks, dislocated shoulder
Brad Voth- Serving 12 match ban
Cardiff 3-4 Stingrays
Stingrays 2-5 Belfast
Kozak has been handed a 10 game ban (plus 10 games suspended) whilst Voth has been given 12 games (with a further 12 suspended).
Kozak was involved in an altercation with Nottinghams Marc Levers which resulted in Levers requiring 25 stitches to his forehead. Kozak, who is entering his first season in Britain, was officially given 6 games for sucker punching an opponent and 4 games for bringing the game into disrepute.
An Elite league official had this to say in an official press release:
"Ice hockey is a very physical sport as everyone is well aware, and occasionally tempers flare and there are flashpoint incidents. However, the games last Sunday saw incidents that we feel are beyond what is the normally acceptable in terms of physical contact and we felt the need to adjudicate strongly.”Games Kozak will miss:
"A lot of discussion took place over the summer recruiting period about teams bringing in players to ‘entertain’ and we have no problem with that philosophy. We are a professional sport however, also acknowledge that we are all in the entertainment business but, there are limits to what is and what is not acceptable. After extensive video review, the incidents involving both Rick Kozak and Brad Voth have been deemed as being unacceptable, and it is our duty to ensure that we send a message to all the clubs, the coaching staff and all the players as to what will not be tolerated.”
13/09 Cardiff (A)
20/09 Coventry (H) CC
21/09 Edinburgh (A)
27/09 Sheffield (A)
28/09 Nottingham (H) CC
04/10 Sheffield (H)
11/10 Nottingham (H)
12/10 Coventry (A)
18/10 Basingstoke (A)
19/10 Edinburgh (H)
He will return to action against the Newcastle Vipers on the 25th October, although the Hull Daily Mail is already speculating that there will be an appeal to shorten the ban.
The Elite League has set the tone with these two bans, which it is hoped, will deter any further incidents. All said and done, Kozaks ban is a huge blow (albeit probably a fair one) to the Stingrays hopes this season. To view the eventful game from last Sunday v Nottingham, tune in to Sky Sports 3 on Friday 12th September for the full game, re-live.
Sunday, 7 September 2008
-Stuart Kerr received a 5 minute penalty for fighting and Kevin Bergin received a roughing penalty after just 27 seconds.
-After some roughing with Stuart Kerr and Rumun Ndur involved, Ndur and Stingray Rick Kozak received game penalties.
- Meanwhile during the second period Stuart Kerr also received a game penalty as the Stingrays passed the 10 minor penalties in a period and the 100 PIM barrier.
-Kevin Bergin and Jonathan Bernier dropped the gloves early in the third period.
-David Clarke hit four goals, whilst Kevin Bergin finished with 1+4.
- Stingray goals: Matt Reynolds, Jeff Glowa
- MOM: Stingrays- Curtis Cruickshank, Panthers- David Clarke
Saturday, 6 September 2008
-The Excel Hull Stingrays lost their opening 08/09 EIHL fixture as the Manchester Phoenix took a 4-3 win out of the Hull Arena.
- The Stingrays trailed 3-0 before a goal from Pavel Gomenyuk brought the score in the first period to 3-1.
- A fightback from the Stingrays leveled the scores at 3-3 in the second period before a third period goal of pure luck handed the victory to the Phoenix.
- Stingray goals: Jeff Glowa, Troy Neumeier and Slava Koulikov
-MOM: Stingrays- Slava Koulikov, Phoenix- Alex Dunn
-F Block Blog MOM- Matt Reynolds, Phoenix- David Beauregard
- Strach said: ""I'm thoroughly disappointed to lose, but we competed hard and finished our checks. All in all I thought the whole team played well, once we settled down. Manchester's fourth goal was the flukiest ever scored. The puck hit Stuart Kerr and then Pasha Gomenyuk and went in. We had our chances to score more goals, but as the saying goes you have to bury them to win."
Thursday, 4 September 2008
Sunday 7th Septmeber: Nottingham Panthers v Excel hull Stingrays @ Trent FM Arena, f/o 4pm
@Hull: 4 Manchester wins, 3 Stingray wins
v Manchester (total): 9 Manchester wins, 6 Stingray wins
Total goals for: Manchester 47-42 Stingrays
@Nottingham: 4 Nottingham wins, 2 Stingray wins
v Nottingham (total): 8 Nottingham wins, 4 Stingray wins
Total goals for: Nottingham 43-24 Stingrays
Last 3 games
10/01/08 3-2 OTW, Altrincham Ice Dome
16/02/08 2-3 L, Hull Arena
23/03/08 6-2 W, Hull Arena
30/12/07 2-5 L, Hull Arena
04/01/08 0-2 L, NIC
15/03/08 2-4 L, NIC
Stingrays- Steve Slonina
Manchester- Adam Walker
Nottingham- Kevin Bergin
Paul Moran- Dislocated shoulder, 2/3 weeks
Bruce Mulherin- Doubtful, VISA issues
Kenton Smith- Doubtful, VISA issues
Luke Fulghum- Doubtful, VISA issues
Kyle Bruce- Doubtful, VISA issues
Dan Tessier- Doubtful, VISA issues
Jade Galbraith- Doubtful, VISA issues
Stingrays 4-3 Manchester
Nottingham 5-3 Stingrays
29 year old netminder Curtis Cruickshank has taken the other assistant coaches role after a 5 year career in British hockey, spanning from Nottingham, Newcastle to Basingstoke and now Hull.
The on ice captaincy has been handed to returning 38 year old defenceman Troy Neumeier, with the alternate captains being given to last seasons captain, Jeff Glowa, and new boy Jason Kostadine.
Strachan had this to say about his new on-ice management and captaincy:
"I think three heads are better than one. They [Koulikov and Cruickshank] are both senior guys and have been around. They know the game. With Curtis being a goalie he can see the whole picture from the ice. As a forward, Slava will give us a different perspective. Feedback from everyone is very important, especially for me."This move will give the Stingrays three avenues of thought for tactics, player lineups and other on ice details, and is likely to please a small section of Stingrays fans who have grown tired of Strachans tactics over the past few years. As Strachan says himself "three heads are better than one" and some new ideas, which will inevitable be thrown into the mix by Cruickshank and Koulikov will do nothing but help the team.
"Troy has played 1,000 professional games. He's a well-respected, senior guy. He has all the qualities needed. He's very level-headed and doesn't get over-excited. He's seen it all, done it all and will make an excellent captain."
The additional of Neumeier as captain will help the Stingrays on so many levels. Neumeier is not only a brilliant defenceman (ok a little devoid of pace at 38), but he will put the squad into place both on and off the ice. Jeff Glowa will be reluctant to give up the captaincy however with him taking the alternate captain badge, the Stingrays will have twice the experience to rely on, meanwhile Jason Kostadine is likely to be the alternate captain who sets an example with his relentless work ethic and constant checking.
Tuesday, 2 September 2008
Paul Moran, who went down during a scuffle between Andrew Sharp, Jason Hewitt and himself, has been officially ruled out for 2 to 3 weeks with a dislocated shoulder. He suffered a similar, abeit more serious, injury last season, which restricted him to 51 out of the Belfast Giants 61 games. Moran told the Hull Daily Mail:
"I was trying to stick up for a team-mate, but I think I got jumped. I felt my shoulder go so I went down on my knees and didn't attempt to fight back. Somehow the officials let Andrew keep punching me"
"I knew my shoulder wasn't in the joint, but didn't know if it was completely dislocated, all I knew is it didn't feel right. That's why I didn't fight back - because I didn't want to do any more damage.
"I've seen the people at the hospital. They say it was not too bad so hopefully with a couple of weeks rest I'll be back playing."
However he was still very positive about the Stingrays chances this season:
"It's very unfortunate. I had really enjoyed last week's training sessions and was really enjoying myself out there. We were playing really well for the first 10 minutes on Saturday. We were skating well, finishing our hits. I liked the look of our team. Hopefully with a couple of weeks rest I'll be back and we will get back on track."Meanwhile, Curtis Cruickshank, who went down after a shot to the body during the Yorkshire Cup on Sunday night, has received the OK to play the Stingrays opening EIHL fixture against the Manchester Phoenix at the Hull Arena on Saturday. The club sent Cruickshank for an X-ray to confirm whether or not he had cracked ribs, as feared. Stingray owner Sue Pack had this to say about Cruickshanks injury:
"We sent Curtis to hospital as a precaution, but I've received a message from him to say the x-rays have shown there are no breaks. I'm delighted Curtis will ice, as we didn't want to lose our number one keeper in the warm-up games. It was just a freak occurrence, it wasn't like anyone ran him or anything, it just happened."The Stingrays move on to a full weeks training with a full squad (minus Paul Moran) with Troy Neumeier and Steve Slonina in the country and ready to face the Manchester Phoenix at 5.30 on Saturday.
EIHL Winners: Coventry Blaze
Challenge Cup Winners: Nottingham Panthers
Knockout Cup Winners: Coventry Blaze
Playoff Winners: Belfast Giants
Top Scorer: Adam Calder (Cov)
Top Netminder: Davis Parley (Not)
Most PIMs: Andre Payette (New)
Key player: Kevin Reiter
One to Watch: Jason Goulet
Surprise package: Austin Sutter
Key player: Evan Cheverie
One to Watch: Mike Burgoyne
Surprise package: Bobby Robins
Key player: Rod Hinks
One to Watch: Brad Voth
Surprise package: Likit Andersson
Key player: Adam Calder
One to Watch: Jonathan Weaver
Surprise package: Carlyle Lewis
Key player: Michel Robinson
One to Watch: Doug Christiansen
Surprise package: Andrei Rajcak
Key player: Jake Riddle
One to Watch: Rick Kozak
Surprise package: Jason Kostadine
Key player: David Beauregard
One to Watch: David Beauregard
Surprise package: Grant Jacobsen
Key player: Todd Griffiths
One to Watch: Tyler Willis
Surprise package: Rob Rankin
Key player: Jade Galbraith
One to Watch: David Clarke
Surprise package: Brendan Cook
A quick turnover for the Panthers who went from being coach less to having a full squad in place in less than three months. Mike Ellis has been replaced by rookie coach Corey Neilson and he has largely installed what looks like one of the best squads in the league, with an attempt at their first ever EIHL title looming. A strong contingent of Brits have returned including high scoring David Clarke, Geoff Woolhouse, Danny Meyers and James Neil to re-join last seasons imports player/coach Neilson, Swede Johan Molin and Canadian Kevin Bergin. A whole host of new imports have joined the club, all of which look very impressive. The names that immediately jump out are netminder Davis Parley, Rumun Ndur, from the Coventry Blaze, forwards Jade Galbraith, Bruce Richardson and lastly, but by no means least, returning to Nottingham is centre Dan Tessier. Tessier, who played at arch rivals Sheffield Steelers last season, came in to replace another standout signing Chris Richards, who has now retired from the game to focus on a career outside of hockey. Despite Richards quitting the club, the Panthers look as good as any one of the other top three clubs (Coventry, Sheffield and Belfast) and so picking a winner between those four teams will be difficult. Nottinghams defence looks susceptable as does their inexperienced coach, which has me placing them in 4th.
Key player: Joey Talbot
One to Watch: Ryan Finnerty
Suprise package: Nathan Gillies
This next EIHL season promises to be one of the best most competitive seasons in the EIHLs history. In general the league can be split into three groups which will be almost certainly correct. Firstly, title competitors (Coventry, Belfast, Nottingham and Sheffield) who have a great chance to win either the title or another of the three cup competitions. Secondly, playoff certainties (Cardiff, Manchester, Newcastle) who will fight to compete for the title but will have more of a chance in the cup competitions. Finally, the teams fighting for playoff qualification (Hull, Edinburgh and Basingstoke) but would do well to have a run in any of the cup comps.
So there it is. Let the 08/09 EIHL season begin.
* Top scorer= Top goalscorer
* Logos from International Hockey Forums