MATCH REPORT: Sheffield Steelers 7 Coventry Blaze 2

Hat-trick: Colin Shields on a Steelers joy night.   Picture: dean woolley
Hat-trick: Colin Shields on a Steelers joy night. Picture: dean woolley
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STEELERS are heading towards the knock out stages of the Challenge Cup after an easy win last night...and off ice they continue to search for an exciting new NHL recruit.

The Sheffield club have been giving out mixed signals about finding reinforcements.

But they ARE interested in Jamie McGinn, who played 17 times for Colorado Avalanche in the world’s greatest league season.

McGinn, like many other NHLers, is fed up of kicking his heels during the lock-out and is considering Steelers’ interest.

Last night, he was considering his options as Steelers romped to victory at the Arena, 7-2 over Coventry Blaze.

They dominated the first period, yet conceded towards the end, going to the dressing room 1-1.

Jeff Legue had engineered the opening goal at 2;49. He drifted out to the right and then fed the puck into the area he normally occupies, for Colin Shields to carefully slot home.

Positionally, Steelers were sound and while they didn’t create many early clear chances (Legue had two efforts) they bossed the game.

But Blaze top scorer Shea Guthrie profited from a Power Play to level at 18;08 though.

Steelers have had the whip hand over Blaze so far beating them three out of four times, putting 17 goals past Peter Hirsch in previous combat.

And they took almost complete control of the middle session. Shields took 32 seconds to see his tame shot deflect off a stick and trickle under the goalie.

And while Coventry’s Greg Leeb watched his deflection beat John DeCaro, Sheffield scored two in a minute through Limpright and the irrepressible Legue.

Defenceman Drew Fata, who had four efforts on goal, got a deserved assist on the last strike.

Matt Stephenson was another blueliner who roamed forward, at will, for Sheffield. He forced a great save before scoring low for the home side’s fifth.

Blaze, in Halloween week, seemed to give up the ghost.

They left big gaps at the back which were further exploited.

Mike Egener summed up Coventry’s night when he let Shields clean through, but the Scotsman had to wait until 54 seconds from the end to complete his hat-trick.

Almost embarrassingly, a seventh goal followed from Limpright.

Period Scores: 1-1, 3-1, 3-1

Penalty Mins: She 6+2+4=12, Cov 4+18+6=28

Powerplay: She 3/8, Cov 2/5

Shots On: John De Caro 8+9+9=26, Peter Hirsch 12+18+8=38 / Adam Goss 0+0+11=11

Referees: Mike Hicks and Andy Carson

* Hull Stingrays have signed ex Steelers forward Tom Squires on a two-way deal from Sheffield Steeldogs.