The Elite Ice Hockey League continued after the international break this week and the early news was that Sheffield Steelers had signed 29 year old winger Simon Ferguson, who was earlier released from his contract at Ljubijana in Slovenia after he couldn’t settle in the city.
Steelers Coach Ryan Finnerty was delighted to have signed his man, and finally completed his roster of import players. He also had an eye on the fate of NHL player Tom Sestito who is currently with the club while the NHL work stoppage continues.
“Simon Ferguson is the perfect signing for us. He is hungry to come into a situation and play out the year.
“He is a hardworking, hard-nosed player who will bring a great work ethic and style of play to our team. I see him in the mould of a Tylor Michel.
“He is another that will bring intensity and energy to the side. He will add offence, but more importantly add to what we already have here as another very good, solid hockey player. He is a perfect fit and has a great hockey resume with much top quality experience,” he said.
The only midweek game was the Dundee Stars travelling to Sheffield to play an out of form Steelers team. Dundee took the early initiative and took an early two goal lead through Matt Baxter and Tristan Harper.
The Steelers looked to be on the back foot as the period closed and the few Stars fans that had made the trip could smell an upset.
The second period would bring a reverse of the first as the Steelers finally found their stride, with GB man Colin Shields scoring and then Steven Goertzen levelling the score in what was turning into a feisty affair.
The third period saw the Steelers take an early lead through Captain Jonathon Phillips, but the stars struck twice in 6 minutes to take the lead back through Pat Ryan and Sami Ryhanen. With two minutes left in the game the Steelers pulled goaltender Geoff Woolhouse for an extra skater, and this gamble paid off as the Steelers then scored 45 seconds later through crowd favourite Tylor Michel.
This took the game to sudden death 4v4 overtime, and the Steelers quickly piled on the pressure, which paid off, as 2.17 into the period forward Shawn Limpright was attacking the goal and Dundee Stars goalkeeper Nic Riopel un-sportingly kicked the goal off its moorings.
This lead to a penalty shot for Limpright who dispatched the shot past Riopel and sealed the win for the Steelers.
This Saturday will see a high tempo game between the Nottingham Panthers and the Cardiff Devils. These games always send sparks flying as two physical and hardworking teams meet at the National Ice Centre in Nottingham. The key men to watch will be Nottingham’s skilful forward David Ling and for the Devils will be Mac Faulkner who is second in the league for overall points scoring.
Elsewhere, the Braehead Clan take on the Sheffield Steelers, and Fife Flyers travel to the Planet Ice rink to take on the Coventry Blaze.