WEEK 18 of the 2023/24 Elite Ice Hockey League season and the Flyers have a tough assignment with a double header against the current runaway league leading Sheffield Steelers.
SATURDAY JANUARY 20th v SHEFFIELD STEELERS @ FIFE ICE ARENA – FACE OFF 7.15pm
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The Flyers welcome the Steelers for their second visit of the season before heading to Sheffield the following day for the final meeting in the regular season in Yorkshire. Since the Flyers last met the Steelers in the middle of December they have gone from strength to strength and have shown remarkable consistency to sit 14 points clear coming into the weekend at the top of the standings. Following the back to back wins against the Flyers the Steelers then recorded shutouts in their next two league games winning 5-0 in Dundee and 4-0 at home against the Cardiff Devils. Sandwiched in between these results was a 5-1 win in Altrincham against the Manchester Storm in the second leg of their Challenge Cup quarter final to see them through 9-3 on aggregate. On Boxing Day the Panthers were beaten 5-1 in Sheffield and next again day 4-0 in Nottingham. The Storm were shellacked 9-3 before the end of the year at the Utilita Arena and on New Years day the Steelers won 4-1 in Altrincham. A couple of road wins followed with a 5-1 win against the Devils and a 6-3 outcome in Glasgow against the Clan who did run the Steelers much closer the next day on Sheffield ice but still lost 3-2. Last weekend the Steelers kept their 100% record on the road intact as they beat the Manchester Storm 5-3 in Altrincham and then on Sunday the Dundee Stars were sent packing after a 6-1 win in Yorkshire. As mentioned the Steelers are unbeaten on the road this season with 18 victories overall including 13 in league play – last season it was game 15 before they tasted defeat on their travels. They also have the longest win streak of the entire season having won their last 14 consecutive games and have not lost back to back games so far this season. The last team to beat the Steelers were the Guildford Flames back on December 9th. Just around the time we last played the Steelers they made the addition of Zach Vinnell to their blueline after the Canadian left the Glasgow Clan and Finlay Ulrick also joined mid-December from the Hull Seahawks after playing the last three seasons with the Manchester Storm.
Last League Visit from Steelers
Overall Elite League Home Record Against Steelers
P 28 W 7 L 21 F 67 A 106
The Steelers have won on their last two visits to Kirkcaldy and are unbeaten in their last six in all EIHL competitions against the Flyers.
As mentioned above the Steelers have the league’s best winning sequence of the season so far at 14 wins and are unbeaten on the road in all competitions this seasons. The Steelers last lost on the road 4-0 in Cardiff on 2nd April 2023.
The Flyers top goal scorers against the Steelers this term are Lucas Chiodo and Vitalijs Pavlovs with two goals each – the Flyers have had five different scorers of their seven goals scored so far. The Steelers top marksmen are Patrick Watling and Mikko Juusola with three goals each and the Steelers have eleven different scorers of their 16 goals.
The Steelers are best in a number of categories so far this season across all EIHL games: they have scored the most powerplay goals and conceded the fewest goals on the penalty kill. They have scored the most even strength goals and conceded the fewest.
They lead all teams with 7 shutouts and are the only team not be shut out. With 5 short handed goals they are tied with the Devils but only 1 conceded is again best of all teams.
SUNDAY JANUARY 21st v SHEFFIELD STEELERS @ UTILITA ARENA – FACE OFF 4.00pm
Last League Visit to Steelers
Overall Elite League Away Record Against Steelers
P 29 W 3 L 26 F 41 A 131
The Flyers are looking to break their longest ever losing streak in Sheffield where they are winless on their last 14 visits.
17th October 2018 was the Flyers last win in Sheffield with goals from Paul Crowder, Brett Bulmer and Evan Bloodoff in a 3-1 victory.
Across all EIHL competitions this season Flyers have scored an average of 2.63 goals per game with 4.49 being the Steelers average. Steelers have conceded an average of 1.57 goals per game with the Flyers averaging 3.71