The Trade-Mart Dundee Stars are out to snap their three-game losing streak tonight as they look to upset fellow playoff hopefuls, Nottingham Panthers at the Motorpoint Arena.

By Kris Smith

Jeff Mason’s men will make their second trip of the season to Nottingham tonight, as they play their fourth match against the English club and they will be looking for a second victory over Corey Neilson’s side, who are fresh off of a 3-1 home win against Cardiff Devils.

Last night, the Stars were on home ice against Manchester Storm and the two teams would be level after the first period, despite the Storm taking the lead after just 77 seconds, as Scott Simmonds converted on a three-on-one breakaway.

Dundee then replied with just over a minute to play as they turned a short spell of pressure into an equaliser, with defenseman, Cole Fraser stepping into a first-time slapshot and blasting the puck into the back of the net, for his first goal as a Star.

Manchester regained the lead in the second session as Stephen Johnson tipped home on the powerplay, but the Stars would again respond and this time Ben Sokay jammed home the rebound from Philippe Sanche’s low effort, also whilst on the man advantage.



However, Matt Ginn’s men would nick a late goal to go into the final break with a 3-2 lead, as Dallas Ehrhardt saw his effort saved by the mask of Anton Svensson before Jonathan Desbiens followed up with the rebound and shot past the Swede as his helmet came loose, resulting in appeals to the referees from the Stars but they would be dismissed.

Dundee struggled to get level in the final period and two identical goals from the visitors, two minutes apart, put them three-goals clear as Cameron Critchlow and Johnson both finished off cross-goal passess with ease.

The Stars did pull one goal back in the final minutes as Chris Lidjsman’s long range effort floated past an unsighted jeremy Brodeur but the Storm stood firm to claim both points.

Meanwhile, in Nottingham, ex-Star Jordan Kelsall opened the scoring to give the Panthers the lead after one period before, Cardiff’s Trevor Cox tied things up in the second.

Niko Lahtinen and David Levin both found the back of the Devils net to seal a crucial win for Nottingham and keep them seventh in the league standings.

Elijiah Barriga leads Dundee with five goals in three appearances against the English club and Jeremy Welsh has bagged the most goals for his side against the Stars, with three.

The Stars are likely to only be one player down this weekend as Swedish forward, Romans Semjonovs still remains out of action with a lower-body injury.



Speaking before the weekend, Stars Head Coach, Mason said: “For us right now, it does not matter who we are playing, it is about making sure we turn up and compete harder than our opponents.

“Nottingham are above us in the standings but they are in a battle to make sure they secure their place in the playoffs.

“We have not seen them a lot lately and they made some changes and in the past when going into that building, we have not started well and that has done us in, so we need to come out and start well because you cannot be going into buildings like that and chasing games.”

Tonight’s match in Nottingham will face-off at 4pm.


Image: Panthers Images/Derek Black.


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