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2013-2014
 

Entering a season for the first time ever as Back To Back champions in not one but two competitions, the League and the Cup, meant that much was expected of a team that made few roster changes across the off season months.    The repeat champion winning side announced that Canadian forward Nathan Rempel would not be returning to the club joining forward Scott Greenfield as the only departures the outfit would see.  In reply, the Spectrum side added veteran Swedish forward Marcus Kristoffersson who had iced in many of Europe’s Elite pro leagues along with 2 full seasons in the American Hockey League.  It was not his first taste of the UK, however.  Kristoffersson helped the Manchester Phoenix to a League title just a few seasons prior during his English debut.  Also on that championship team, Guildford trained forward Tom Duggan returned to the Flames after a 3 year hiatus with Phoenix, the club to whom he departed following his first stint at Spectrum during the 2009-2010 set. 

Things got off to a pretty good start in terms of title defence, with 7 wins from the first 10 games, and at least a point in all but 1.  A .500 record for a 4 game October stretch was followed by a 7 game win streak in November. The results had the Flames in the league’s top spot by the time the calendar flipped to December, while a Cup semi-final position was well and truly safe.  The good fortune winds of nearly two and a half seasons, however, quickly changed. A promising opportunity to retain or build on the trophy count was relentlessly haunted by performance and consistent, long term roster issues including the sudden departure of the Flames all time leading British point getter Rick Plant.  The player who had iced in more games than any Flames player ever, and had put up higher offensive totals than all but a single other skater had opted to return to Telford where he would ice with the Tigers for the remainder of the season; suiting up for his last Flames match on December 1st.  Unfortunately, the change also coincided with the club’s worst historical injury crisis that saw more than 140 man games lost across league and cup play, including the absence of 50 goal scorer Curtis Huppe for all but 8 league starts.  In mid December the Flames surprised even themselves by winning road games at Milton Keynes and Peterborough on December 14th and 15th; icing just 12 skaters in the opener and managing to bump it up with an extra set of legs the following night to remain at the table top.  Though remaining at their lofty perch into January, a loss to Bracknell Bees to close out December was followed by defeat against Basingstoke Bison on New Year’s Day, and so the slip from contention began with just 3 wins from 8 January outings.  With an ongoing short bench, the Spectrum team looked at filling some spots with the signing of British skater Nicky Watt and an additional Slovak offensive star, Martin Opatovsky, both of whom were available for leg 1 of the cup semi -final.  They were shortly followed in by netminder Gregg Rockman who would be wearing Flames colours just a few games later. Unfortunately, Opatovsky and Watt could do little with their new teammates to deter the now league leading Basingstoke Bison who proceeded to humble the Flames by a Leg 1 8-3 count to all but advance by virtue of the opening leg win.  A gamey Flames side, however, did make it close in the end, scoring 4 straight 3rd period goals to bring the aggregate count within 1 before a Bison empty netter ensured a Cup ‘Threepeat’ would not take place. 

Though March began with 3 defeats, a trio of wins to close out the regular season offered more hope for playoff success.  That hope was not dampened by a 4-4 road tie and a 3-2 home win over Telford Tigers in the quarter final to advance for a 9th consecutive season to the Coventry Finals weekend.  Pitted against the Bison in the semi- final, the newly crowned Cup champions disposed of the Flames by a 5-2 score, and went on to overcome the League champion Manchester Phoenix to take home a 2013-2014 ''double’’ while sending the Flames to the off season thinking of a re-build for the campaign ahead. 

League Table

Team

 GP   

 W   

 OL  

 L    

 GF   

 GA   

 PTS

 Manchester* 54  39  2  13  232  157  80
 Basingstoke 54  36  2  16  205  159  74
 Guildford 54  32  5  17  213  174  69
 Milton   Keynes 54  30  4  20  200  182  64
 Swindon 54  29  2  23  190  172  60
 Telford 54  28  1  25  193  182  57
 Sheffield 54  20  8  26  194  226  48
 Bracknell 54  21  4  29  168  210  46
 Peterborough 54  18  9  27  177  224  45
 Slough 54  17  3  34  160  246  37
* League Champions
Premier Cup Table

Team

 GP   

 W   

 OL  

 L    

 GF   

 GA   

 PTS

 Manchester*  18  14  2  2  82  40  30
 Guildford*  18  14  2  2  89  53  30
 Basingstoke*  18  13  1  4  69  53  27
 Milton   Keynes*  18  11  0  7  69  59  22
 Slough  18  9  0  9  70  62  18
 Swindon  18  8  1  9  44  57  17
 Sheffield  18  6  2  10  58  75  14
 Bracknell  18  5  3  10  55  80  13
 Telford  18  6  0  12  50  73  12
 Peterborough  18  4  3  11  50  84  11

*Clinched Semi Final Berth

Semi Final:
 

Leg 1:  Basingstoke 8 Flames 3
Leg 2:  Flames 6 Basingstoke 3
(Basingstoke win 11-9 on Aggregate)

Leg 1: Milton Keynes 5 Manchester 5
Leg 2: Manchester 4 Milton Keynes 5
(Milton Keynes win 10-9 on Aggregate)


Final:

Leg 1: Milton Keynes 1 Basingstoke 4
Leg 2: Basingstoke 3 Milton Keynes 4
(Basingstoke win 7-5 on aggregate)

Cup Champions: Basingstoke Bison
Playoffs

Playoff Quarter Finals:

(League table 1 v 8; 2 v 7; 3 v 6; 4 v 5)
2 Game Aggregate Series

Leg 1:  Telford 4 Flames 4
Leg 2: Flames 3 Telford 2
(Flames win 7-6 on aggregate)

Playoff Semi Finals: 

Basingstoke 5 Flames 2
Manchester 4 Swindon 3 (OT)

Playoff Final:

Manchester 3 Basingstoke 5

Playoff Champions: Basingstoke Bison

Player Stats
Player GP G A P PM
David Longstaff 57 22 47 69 18
Tom Duggan 56 23 45 68 46
Jozef Kohut 40 27 29 56 121
Milos Melicherik 47 15 41 56 77
Marcus Kristoffersson   53 34 19 53 40
Branislav Kvetan 61 23 27 50 162
Rick Plant 27 19 27 46 20
Paul Dixon 56 6 31 37 36
David Savage 58 9 25 34 52
Ben Campbell 54 13 21 34 12
Martin Opatovsky 20 10 11 21 35
Jez Lundin 42 4 11 15 54
Stuart Potts 50 3 11 14 16
Neil Liddiard 61 1 12 13 121
Andrew Hemmings 61 6 8 14 43
Dean Holland 54 6 5 11 86
Nicky Watt 25 5 6 11 36
Curtis Huppe 10 4 3 7 6
Ricky Skene 56 0 6 6 46
Andrew Sharp 41 1 2 3 173
AnchorChris Cooke 36 0 2 2 4
Gregg Rockman 13 0 1 1 2
Mark Lee 26 0 1 1 27

 
Player MINS GA GAA SHOTS SV % SO
Gregg Rockman 789 35 2.66 405 91.4 0
James Hadfield 1483 80 3.24 832 90.4 2
Mark Lee 1423 78 3.29 758 89.7 1
Looking Back

GUILDFORD FLAMES ICE HOCKEY CLUB
Guildford Spectrum
Parkway, Guildford
Surrey GU1 1UP

Tel: 01483 452244

Sportfact Ltd t/a Guildford Flames Ice Hockey Club registered in England number 2936656
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