Streatham know Thunder game is must-win to boost play-off prospects

BY DAVID CARR

Streatham travel to Milton Keynes to take on the Thunder this weekend in a game they must win to have a chance of realistically catching the Everyone Active Raiders for a higher play-off seed.

Jeremy Cornish’s men are on a four-game winless streak after an overtime loss to Basingstoke Bison last Saturday and then going down 4-1 at home to Bracknell Bees last Sunday.

“We played well and were unlucky not to get maximum points on Saturday,” explained head coach Jeremy Cornish, who was without Adam Wood and Josh Condren for both fixtures.

“A point on the road against the Bison wasn’t a bad thing, but when you get to OT you always fancy your chances.”

Former GB forward Russ Cowley scored the winner for Basingstoke after goals from Rupe Quiney, Ryan Webb and Alex Roberts earned the Londoners a 3-3 regulation tie.

On Sunday the RedHawks were tied up with Bracknell at 1-1 with 20 minutes left thanks to a goal from Scott Bailey, cancelling out an earlier effort from Tyler VanKleef.

The final period saw Bees score four unanswered goals to take the game 5-1 after Streatham fell foul of the officials following a non-call on bleeding defenseman Ben Russell.

“It was good to have such a big crowd in for the game,” admitted Cornish. “We thought it should have been a powerplay for us after Benny got hit in the face by Watty’s stick and started bleeding.

“No call was made and of course the very next shift they score and it was an uphill battle from there. We need to pick ourselves up and be ready to go again this weekend against the Thunder.

“We know they have a lot of energy and some talented players, and they’ll be eyeing it as a game to pick up themselves. They’ve come close recently to beating the likes of Swindon up there so we need to be at it 100 per cent if we want to win”.

Streatham don’t return to home ice until February 9, when they will face MK again with a 5.30pm face off.

“Suddenly you start to look at the fixture list and there aren’t many games left,” said Cornish.

“We only have five more home games for the rest of the league season before the play-offs, so if this group of players want to make it a season to remember then all of us need to step things up.”

The RedHawks are likely to welcome back Wood (flu) to their line-up.

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