By Kris Smith
The Stars have claimed three wins from three against the Flames, beating them twice in Guildford with the help of penalty shots in a 4-3 victory and then claiming a 4-2 result, on their most recent visit.
There was also a one-goal difference when they last came to the DIA as Marc LeFebvre’s men took the two points after a 5-4 match, with both sides battling all the way.
On the scoresheet for Dundee that night was Josh Brittain, Ryan Valentini (2), Drydn Dow and Jonathan McBean, whilst Matt Alvaro, Ryan Tait, Lewis Hook and Austin Glover hit the net for Guildford.
Only five players have scored more than once across the three meetings between the two teams as Tait has two goals for the Flames this season but Britain (2), Parrottino (2) Dow (3) and Valentini (4) have all scored multiple times for the Stars.
Currently four points separate the Stars in sixth and the fourth-placed Flames but with a trip to the Spectrum Arena to follow next Saturday, Dundee could find themselves level by next Saturday, with Guildford also playing their Challenge Cup Semi-Final mid-week.
Last week, the Stars were victorious in the latest Tayside Derby as they beat rivals, Fife Flyers 3-2 in overtime at home, thanks to goals from Brent Beaudoin and Brittain, before Dow bagged the overtime winner.
However, last Sunday they were handed a 5-1 loss from league leaders, Sheffield Steelers with Spencer Naas netting their only goal to keep him top of the league scoring charts with 23 strikes, whilst Valentini tops the points column with 40 for the year.
Meanwhile, the Flames were beaten 4-0 in Cardiff by the Devils before bouncing back to take a 5-2 home win over Belfast Giants, with Hook, Ryan Hughes, Tait, Steven McParland and Brett Ferguson all on target.
Following Sean Allen’s departure mid-week, the Stars will be able to ice all of their imports and a full line-up should they not pick up any knocks before face-off.
Speaking before their only game of the weekend, Stars Head Coach, LeFebvre said: “It is a playoff game for us and we know that we have to get points every weekend somehow, so this weekend it is more imperative as we only have the one game.
“It is at home but every game this season against them has been tight and they have been playing pretty well as of late, so we know hat to expect from them.”
Discussing how his side managed to prevail in the three previous games against Guildford, he continued: “We have just found a way to win and the three times that we have beat them so far it has all been in different ways but they are all tight games right until the end.
“We got a shootout winner down there and we hit an empty-netter late in the game, so you know it will be a dog fight right until the very end.”
Stars captain, Drydn Dow then gave the players perspective, adding: “It is only a one-game weekend, so we have nothing to save it for after and we need to bring it all on the night.
“It is a big game with big points on the line as they are right around us in the standings, so it is a good chance for us to keep moving up in the table
“They are a good team, so we have to make sure we are playing defensively sound and they are skilled up front so we need to continue to be structured at the back and take our chances when we get them.”
With Dundee facing the Flames in their next two-games, Dow also shared how they can use that to begin preparing for the playoff format.
He said: “It is similar to a play-off format where we are playing them back-to-back, so it is a learning opportunity for the guys who have not been in the league before and not done that in the playoffs.”
Face-off for tonight’s home games is at 7pm and you can buy your tickets HERE!
All images: Derek Black.