Phillips curses ill fortune

Jonathan Phillips - Sheffield Steelers
Jonathan Phillips - Sheffield Steelers
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It is a mark of how far Steelers have come to see how deflated most of the team was after scooping nine points from the last possible 10.

A penalty shoot out loss at Cardiff Devils meant they could not claim five straight wins in a season that had earlier lacked consistency.

Assistant captain Jonathan Phillips said he and his team mates were gutted by the Welsh reverse, which dropped Sheffield into third place.

“Nobody likes to blame back luck, but there are some games where things happen where you have to question such bad fortune” he said.

“Jeff Legue and Stefan Meyer both had empty nets in front of them when their sticks broke in almost identical manner. One of their goals flew in off Gord Baldwin’s ankle. Another off Jason Hewitt’s stick.

“We had more shots on goal or blocked than I can remember. But it wasn’t meant to be, so now we have to focus on Coventry Blaze, in our building, on Saturday.”

The game could be of particular significance for Coventry Blaze coach Matt Soderstrom. If he loses, it will be his fifth consecutive reverse.

Blaze are bottom of the Erhardt Conference standings and seventh in the 10-man Elite League.

They expect to have brothers Michael and Adam Henrich back from injury, though.

Steelers will have defenceman Dustin Kohn back from three match suspension following a cross-checking incident at Nottingham Panthers. That will put pressure on forward places, as Tim Spencer, who has been playing on the blue line, could be back up front.

In Spencer’s absence from the wing, Phil Hill has had more ice time - and he celebrated that fact with a goal against the club that rejected him, Cardiff.