By Kris Smith
After last night’s results, the teams in the bottom four playoff spots all near reversed, as Dundee and Coventry fell from fifth and sixth, to seventh and eighth respectively.
Therefore, the winner of tonight’s game in the SkyDome Arena will most likely avoid finishing in eighth and could still climb as high as fifth.
Last night, the Stars were beaten 4-1 in Cardiff as they faced the Devils and were 1-0 behind after seven minutes, when Justin Crandall fired the home team into the lead.
Dundee then responded through Charlie Combs to tie the game on 29 minutes but were back to being a goal down again less than a minute later, as Stephen Dixon restored Cardiff’s lead.
A short scrap between Combs and Devils forward, Trevor Cox soon followed and the pair were sent to serve their five-minute majors after an admirable bout.
However, Jake Coughler soon made it 3-1 to the Devils, but the Stars were quick to respond with another goal that kept them juts one-goal behind.
Although, their second goal of the night would be disallowed as Connor Sills collided with netminder, Mac Carruth as the puck went in.
Coughler then bagged his brace before the end of the second period to make it 4-1 and that would be the last goal of the night as the Devils held back the Stars in the final session.
Tonight will also be the Tayside teams last chance to claim a win in Coventry this season after losing out 5-1 and 7-2.
Speaking ahead of their final trip to Coventry, Stars forward, Timi Lahtinen said: “We need to play hard on defence because they are going to come at us hard in the smaller rink.
“We want to limit their goalscoring chances and make sure we take ours.”
With playoff fever already taking over the league, the Finn then added: “We are very excited to be where we are with the potential to do well.
“Making the playoffs was the first goal we were set, now we are really excited that we are in with a chance to go all the way.”
Face-off for tonight’s game in Coventry is at 6pm.
Also, tickets for the home leg of our Playoff Quarter-Final tie will go on sale at 9pm this evening and they will also be on sale from 10am at the Dundee Ice Arena box office tomorrow.
Depending on tonight’s results, the possible outcomes for the Stars and matches will be:
Finishing 5th – Nottingham (h) Saturday 23rd (7PM) & Nottingham (a) Sunday 24th (4pm)
Finishing 6th – Cardiff (a) Saturday 23rd (7:30pm on Premier Sports) & Cardiff (h) Sunday 24th (5pm)
Finishing 7th – Sheffield (Home and Away dates TBC) If Sheffield choose home leg on Saturday 23rd, face-off will be at 7pm and if its Sunday 24th. Face-off will be at 4pm.
Finishing 8th – Belfast (a) Saturday 23rd (7pm) & Belfast (h) Sunday 24th (5pm).