Goalie DeCaro key man for Sheffield Steelers - Woolhouse

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Steelers’ back-up goalie Geoff Woolhouse hopes to challenge regular netminder John DeCaro for more starts next season - but remains an ardent admirer of him.

“Of course I’m looking for more minutes,” he said.

“I want to build on the momentum I had last year. The biggest thing is being part of a winning team, I know all sportsmen say that but it’s true, it’s what you remember, the winning together, the fight to be the best team and lift a trophy at the end of the year .

“I’m looking forward to working with Johnny again, he worked well together last season and think we will do again.

“He is a great goalie and all of the guys in the room were delighted to see him return back this year, I was disappointed when I heard initially he was going to Norway and I’m pleased he changed his mind.

“To win the league you need consistency and Johnny gives you that. He isn’t a goalie who is great one night at 97% and then stinks the joint out the day after at 87% - you get solid reliable good goaltending every game from him. Last year he had almost a 93% saves average and also only conceded 2.5 goals a game.

“I don’t know why some fans didn’t buy into him last year, we all thought he was a star, he kept us in games we had no right to be still in. Maybe it’s because he doesn’t make flashy Hollywood style saves. He doesn’t have to, he is so big and and he uses that size to his advantage. He is calm and relaxed and he gives the rest of the team a good feeling, he doesn’t panic so you don’t panic either .

“Johnny has won before which is a huge advantage. We have assembled a team here that has a great chance to deliver and I honestly don’t think I could be playing alongside a goalie who will give us a better chance, I wouldn’t swap for any of the other goalies in our league . “