By Kris Smith
The Stars will visit Manchester tonight, before travelling back to face the Devils in Dundee tomorrow and they will do so coming off the back of a pair of victories over Fife Flyers in two friendlies, last week.
Jeff Mason’s men took on their Tayside rivals in back-to-back nights for a Valentine’s friendlies series to fill in the league’s international break for Team GB and the Stars produced a 5-2 win in Dundee on Saturday night, before taking a 4-3 victory in Kirkcaldy last Sunday.
Dundee also won their last competitive match as they were 3-1 winners at home against the Storm, where Carter Folk, Hugo Reinhardt and Johan Eriksson fired the Stars to victory, with Cole Carter providing Manchester’s only goal.
The Stars have won one of their four contests with Matt Ginn’s team this season and make their final trip of the regular season to Altrincham tonight, where they hope to start pulling themselves off the foot of the table.
Dundee will also be without forward Romans Semjonovs as he has been ruled out for a number of weeks with a lower-body injury.
Speaking about the importance of tonight’s match, Stars Head Coach, Mason said: “The guys are well aware that the playoffs are really starting now and playing a team like Manchester, who are six points up on us and in seventh place,is huge.
“We play them twice more and we have a game in hand on them, so if we take care of business against them, then there is that gap closed.
“Certainly, every point is crucial but the teams that are within striking distance of us to catch are even more important, so it is important to take the points and give them none.”
Stars forward, Philippe Sanche also spoke about the massive opportunity in front of the team of tonight’s match, adding: “We have a couple games in hand on some teams, so every game is really important to get back into a playoff spot.
“It is a really tough building to play in, so we need to manage the puck well and put a lot of pressure on them.
“It is also about respecting the game plan and competing for 60-plus minutes and we know we can get good results by doing that.”
Face-off for tonight’s game in Manchester is at 7pm. Buy your tickets HERE!