September 29th, 2016

Coventry Blaze boss Chuck Weber demands to see an improvement

Coventry Blaze boss Chuck Weber demands to see an improvement Coventry Blaze boss Chuck Weber demands to see an improvement
Updated: 9:36 am, Oct 01, 2015

BLAZE head coach Chuck Weber admits his side have to start making a lot of improvements after tasting back-to-back defeats over the weekend.

On Saturday evening Blaze slipped to their third Challenge Cup defeat in four matches after losing 4-1 on the road at Manchester Storm.

And on Sunday they tasted another defeat at home to Belfast Giants as they returned to Elite League action.

Blaze have won just two matches in seven in all competitions in 2015 and Weber wants his new-look side to start finding a winning mentality.

“We take one step forward and three backwards,” said Weber. “There is not enough consistency to give ourselves a chance to be successful.

“I am disappointed with this group. When we built this group we thought it had a little more character than they are showing now.

“We have our structure and we have our systems. We need to start winning our one-on-one battles.

“There are a lot of improvements required, we are nowhere near where we need to get to. There is a lot of hard work ahead.”

The weekend started with a trip to Manchester and it was a familiar face who opened the scoring for Storm with former Blaze defenceman David Phillips grabbing the go-ahead goal in the 14th minute.

Luke Salazar doubled Storm’s lead 86 seconds into the middle session before Ashley Tait pulled a goal back three minutes after the half-hour mark.

But Matt Caria restored Storm’s two-goal advantage on 56 minutes and Vinny Scarsella added the insurance with an empty-net marker 66 seconds from time.

Blaze had a chance to put things right when they returned to Elite League action at the Skydome the following evening.

But it was the Giants who came flying out of the traps and took the lead through Kris Beech in the fifth minute of play in a first period which saw them out-shoot Blaze 20-8.

Mike Forney hit the frame of the goal for Giants and Ned Lukacevic and Mike Quesnele found the bar and post respectively for Blaze before Mike Radja added a second on 33 minutes.

The Giants then had player-coach Derrick Walser ejected for clashing with Boris Valabik and Josh Godfrey pulled a goal back for Blaze with ten minutes remaining but, despite calling a time-out and pulling goaltender Brian Stewart, they could not force overtime.

Weber added: “We had some snap-shots and some good play at times but we were not consistent enough.

“It was the same old thing and I did not think we really worked hard enough. You create your own luck with hard work and we had a few bounces go against us.

“We didn’t really start to push until the incident with Boris. That got us going but it came too late. You cannot wait until six minutes into the third period to get going.”

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