17th of November 2017
Semi-final and a perfect ten the possible rewads this weekendThe Sherfield School Basingstoke Bison start their weekend on the road with a top of the group clash against the Peterborough Phantoms in the Autumn Cup. The winner of the game has the chance to claim the top spot and secure a semi-final against the Hull Pirates while the runner up will have the Swindon Wildcats as their semi-final opponents.
With former EPL stalwarts Ales Padelek and Darius Pliskausas as their overseas players the Phantoms have built a very good NIHL roster around them. Retaining many of the 16/17 players Head Coach Slava Koulikov again has the Phantoms in a good position this season but they go into this weekend on the back of a double loss weekend.
On Sunday night the Herd return to home ice for a 5.30pm face-off against the London Raiders. It’s the Raiders’ second visit to Hampshire this season, their last a comfortable win for the Bison in a game which saw the Raiders’ Captain take over and admirably complete the netminding duties after an early third period injury to the only goaltender they travelled with.
There’s lots to play for this weekend with a group winner’s spot in the Autumn Cup on Saturday being the prize and Sunday the aim being a tenth successive league win in NIHL1 South.
Head Coach Doug Sheppard said; “On Saturday we get a chance to play Peterborough who are a top team in the league this season and a good measuring stick for any contenders to be measuring against. A win for us will see us finish ahead of them in the Autumn Cup group stages and although we’ve already secured one of the semi-final places we’ll be looking to finish the group stages on a high.”
“On Sunday we take on London. It’s possible the last game wasn’t a true reflection of what the Raiders have to offer after an injury robbed them of their goaltender for the majority of the final period. We’ve got a great start in the league and I hope we can continue that Sunday by chalking up our tenth win.”
He concluded; “We’ll hopefully get some bodies back as we’ve played very short these last few weeks. Josh Smith may return and Paul Petts should be in the line up to. We know we have two important games but we also know that we must step things up on home ice to make sure we avoid a repeat of last Saturday.”
Bison’s Autumn Cup clash on Saturday at Planet Ice, Peterborough is a 7.00pm face-off while Sunday night’s league match up with London is on home ice with a 5.30pm face-off.