Sheffield Steeldogs

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Sheffield Steeldogs
Title Sponsor www.Puckstop.com
League National Ice Hockey League National Division (Northern)
Founded 2010
History Sheffield Steeldogs
2010–present

Sheffield Scimitars
2002–2010

Arena iceSheffield
Capacity 1,500
City Sheffield, England
Team Colours White, Blue,

         

Owners Ali Cree

Robin Grayson

Director of Hockey Ben Morgan
General Managers Claire Rowbotham
Head Coach Ben Morgan
Team Captain Lewis Bell

The Sheffield Steeldogs are a semi professional ice hockey team, based at the iceSheffield complex in Sheffield, England.

History[edit]

The club came into existence during the summer of 2010[1] as a replacement for the previous tenants of the iceSheffield rink, the Sheffield Scimitars, after the Scimitars were able to fundraise over a million pounds to revamp the team.[2]

The team have played in the English Premier Ice Hockey League from the 2010–2017 season.

After their first season in the EPL, the team achieved a playoff semi-final berth with an 8th-placed finish. The team started the 2011/12 season under the stewardship of Andre Payette, a Canadian forward who is known for his physical presence on the ice rather than his scoring touch, and many in British Ice Hockey had predicted that Sheffield would struggle to a bottom-three finish. Payette's team, made up predominantly of local players and a small band of Eastern European imports, excelled during the 2011/12 season, pulling off several shock wins, including a win against fierce rivals Manchester Phoenix, a strong 3:1 win against Slough Jets and a fantastic 2:0 away shutout at MK Lightning. The Steeldogs had mixed physical hockey with attacking flare to fire their way to a solid top-5 spot and dispelled any notions of a ‘goon hockey’ tag by achieving a semi-final place against Milton Keynes Lightning (Sheffield Steeldogs won the first leg 1:0 at Ice Sheffield).

The Steeldogs went on to finish third in the league after hinting at a title challenge. A two-goal victory of the Basingstoke Bison in their playoff quarter final led to their first appearance at the playoff finals in Coventry. There the Steeldogs met archrivals the Manchester Phoenix in an epic battle that was decided on penalty shots in favour of the Lancashire outfit. The Steeldogs also reached the EPL cup final but were soundly beaten by league champion Guildford Flames as they did the double.

Andre Payette once again led the Steeldogs in 2012/13 but faced a big challenge to repeat the success of the previous season. With young goaltender Ben Bowns making the switch to the EIHL and an aging defence, it proved to be a difficult rebuilding process for the still inexperienced coach. Fans had hoped that Ben Bowns would be re-signed, however he switched to the EIHL becoming the starting net minder for Hull Stingrays.

Steeldogs star players include Coach Ben Morgan, Captain Lewis Bell and the Russian Wall Dmitri Zimozdra.

Roster 2017/18[edit]

Netminders

34 Dmitri Zimozdra

20 Brandon Stones

31 Curtis Warburton

Defence

4 Lewis Bell

6 Ben Morgan

9 Thomas Barry

11 Thomas Relf

25 Jamie Scott

42 Tim Smith

Forwards

5 Brady Doxey

12 Joe Cross

14 James Spurr

17 Andy Hirst

18 Greg Wood

19 Cameron Brownley

21 Liam Charnock

22 Llyod Gibson

51 Ashley Calvert

53 Aaron Jepson

67 Milan Kolena

81 Charlie Thompson

86 Adrian Palak

2017/18 Season[edit]

League

This is the first season that the Sheffield Steeldogs were to participate in the National Ice Hockey League North conference, the Moralee Conference. The season started with player coach Ben Morgan assembling his team and completing the roster with a mix of youth, speed, experience and skill, with the majority of players being a 'home grown player' and being from the Sheffield area. Lewis Bell was named the club's captain at the start of the season with the assistants being Tim Smith and Ashley Calvert.

The first game of the season was away to the last league champions on the former English Premier League, the Telford Tigers. It saw the Steeldogs set the tempo for the season by taking the Tigers to overtime and just falling short in the final period. The dogs would then go unbeaten in the next 11 league games. Andrew Hirst reached a personal milestone in this time by scoring his 100th goal for the Steeldogs in a win against the Billingham Stars on the 23rd September 2017.

Steeldogs first trip to Blackburn proved to be a thrilling game. The Hawks would take an early lead in the game and it would take the Dogs 59 minutes of the game to score their first goal, Ashley Calvert getting the equaliser in the last minute of regulation. The game then went to overtime when a penalty shot was awarded to the dogs, Milan Kolena scoring the penalty shot and winning the frantic game.

November 26 would see the second meeting of the season between the Steeldogs and Hull Pirates, but the first meeting in the league between the sides. The contest that took place in Hull saw the Pirates take the points and hand the Steeldogs their first defeat in the league in regular time.

The Dogs would go December unbeaten and in January would only lose once, to Telford Tigers in a 1-0 loss at home.

February's league campaign would start off slow with a loss away to Whitley Bay. This loss was following a home and away fixture against the Pirates on Friday and Saturday, the Sunday game showed the Steeldogs concede 3 goals in the final period against a Warriors team playing their only game of the weekend. The Steeldogs would win the remaining of their games in February and leave them on top of the Moralee Conference.

March left the Steeldogs with 4 games remaining in the league, Hull Pirates had a game in hand on the Dogs and were only 1 point behind the Dogs in the league. Following 2 wins for the dogs and 3 wins for the Pirates, one of these against 3rd place Telford, the league came down to the final weekend with 2 games against Hull. Both games were a must win for the Dogs, 1 victory for the Pirates would see them take the league. Saturdays game would see the forth shutout in a row for Dmitri Zimozdra as the Dogs would win 1-0. Sundays game was a much more open affair with a 6-4 win for the Dogs which saw them win the league in Hull's rink.

MORALEE CONFERENCE LEAGUE WINNERS 2017/18

National Cup

The majority of games in December and early January were for the National Cup against Peterborough Phantoms and Hull Pirates. Within this group the Steeldogs managed to win 3 games and lost 4 in regulation and 1 in overtime. This was enough to see the Steeldogs prevail onto the next stage of the cup with the help of some adjusted points between the final Hull and Peterborough game.

The next stage saw the Dogs come up against close rivals Hull in the semi finals of the cup. The games were a home and away fixture with an aggregate score between the 2 games.

The first game took place in Sheffield and saw the Dogs win 3-2. The Dogs then managed to increase the aggregate score away in Hull and win the overall fixture by winning 3-1, winning the overall competition 6-3 and advancing onto the National Cup final against Swindon Wildcats.

Autumn Cup

The Steeldogs would bail out of the Autumn Cup throughout September and October against Basingstoke Bison and Peterborough Phantoms.

References[edit]

  1. ^ A New Start » News » Sheffield Scimitars Ice Hockey Club – English Premier League Archived 5 September 2010 at the Wayback Machine. Sheffieldscimitars.co.uk (2010-07-17). Retrieved on 2010-12-13.
  2. ^ A New Era for Sheffield » News » Sheffield Scimitars Ice Hockey Club – English Premier League Archived 5 September 2010 at the Wayback Machine. Sheffieldscimitars.co.uk (2010-07-03). Retrieved on 2010-12-13.

External links[edit]