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2018-2019
 

After an opening Elite League campaign that soared much higher than initial expectations, excitement heading to year two at the top flight was amplified with off season news of a strong contingent of returning players.  All-Star Defencemen Jesse Craige and Calle Ackered each signed on for 2 more years as did another All-Star, and the league’s leading assist getter, winger John Dunbar.  Joining them on multi-year pacts up the middle were Kruise Reddick and Brett Ferguson.  After a career year, forward Ian Watters also agreed to return on a single year arrangement joining netminders Mike Will and Chris Carrozzi, GB national team forward Ben Davies, as well as a pair of British Blueliners in Jez Lundin and Kevin Phillips that set the core of the club that would continue on from the magical inaugural term.  Looking to improve on the previous set, the Flames went to work on signing Canadian forward Kevin King who had nearly 70 points during his first Elite League stop at Milton Keynes Lightning.  He was joined at the front by Americans Evan Ritt and Evan Janssen from French league Gap and ECHL outfit Rapid City Rush, respectively.  Fresh off a Canadian university National championship, Jamie Crooks from University of Alberta also joined the front lines, as did a pair of Under 20 GB skaters, and former Guildford Jr. members, Richard Krogh and Joshua Waller.  At the back, Spectrum’s men added AHL and ECHL veteran Corbin Baldwin, and Jordan Abt just off his first full season of pro hockey with Norfolk Admirals.  The defensive unit was rounded out with experience from more than 200 Swedish Hockey League games and plenty of Elite League time when Erik Lindhagen was a late summer addition after a 2-year spell with Nottingham Panthers.  Canadian netminder Travis Fullerton, just beyond a season with Dundee Stars, joined Carrozzi and Will to close out the netminding team.

After splitting the opening pair of Cup games with Coventry Blaze in early September, they finished the remainder of the month with another 3 wins and 3 defeats, including a 2nd split in cup action.  Early in October, with fewer than 10 games in the books, former GB member Phillips was released from the club while an addition was added shortly after when Canadian skater TJ Foster, a U of A Golden Bear Alum, took up Flames colours after opening the campaign at Liiga side, Sport. 

Mid October included a 3-game skid but 6 wins in the month made it a good run that also began the longest winning streak of the term when the Flames won 7 straight from October 21st through November 10th, including success in the Cup at League Champion Cardiff Devils, and wins over Belfast Giants and Sheffield Steelers.  The 7-game streak was followed by a .500 record through the end of the season’s 3rd month but the real excitement began in mid-December when a 2nd place Challenge Cup table finish put Surrey’s men in Steelers’ direct path for a 2 game Quarter Final showdown.  After tying the away leg in Sheffield 4-4, the Flames returned home a week later for a 5-4 win just ahead of Christmas to guarantee a semi-final slot; the first final 4 appearance in their new league.   

January proved to be a bit of a slog with 7 defeats against just 4 league wins, but there was a rather important win in the opening Cup Semi-final leg when the Flames, on home ice, downed league powerhouse Nottingham Panthers to take a 5-2 Cup lead into the closing game in February where a 3-1 road win qualified Spectrum’s tenants for the Championship final against Belfast Giants.  Immediately adding on 4 league wins on the bounce, another milestone was achieved.  Amidst that stretch, on February 17th, a 1-0 shutout victory over Manchester Storm helped the club hoist its 1st ever Elite League trophy thanks to the Patton Conference title. With the 1st Elite silver parade on Spectrum ice out of the way, the accumulation of league points also put a playoff spot firmly in sight. 

March 10th at Viola Arena in Cardiff saw the Flames contest more Silver in the ‘winner take all’ Cup Final against Northern Ireland’s favourites, but sadly fate would dangle a near win before exchanging for a heartbreaking defeat with an eventual 2-1 overtime loss that shattered the hopes of Flames faithful.  Though a 2nd trophy was not in the cards before the regular season curtain closed, enough points were banked for the club’s first ever top 5 finish.

The final placing put the Flames in line for a Quarter Final playoff 2 game aggregate series against Glasgow Clan.  In the opener on Spectrum ice, Clan jumped out to a 3-0 lead through 40 minutes, but a couple of Flames goals in the final frame pulled them within 1, and turned the tide ahead of a road visit to Scotland for the closing leg.  Less than 5 minutes in, Jamie Crooks had Spectrum’s men back on even terms and Ian Watters had them in front not long after that. They would not relinquish that aggregate lead during an eventual 5-0 win, 7-3 combined, that solidified a first ever Playoff Final 4 appearance at Nottingham.  Unfortunately, in the semi-final against Giants, the Cup winners and newly crowned League champions, the Flames fell short by the same 2-1 Cup Final score, this time in regulation, and were eliminated from a championship game appearance.    

League Table
 Team GP W L OTSOL GF GA PTS
 Belfast  *  60  45  13   2  238  147  92
 Cardiff  60  43  11  6  235  146  92
 Nottingham  60  29  19  12  183  181  70
 Glasgow  60  31  24  5  202  186  67
 Guildford  60  30  23  7  189  180  67
 Fife  60  30  24  6  188  204  66
 Sheffield  60  30  26  4  183  203  64
 Coventry  60  27  25  8  209  221  62
 Manchester  60  27  28  5  179  208  59
 Dundee  60  23  25   12  169  201  58
 Milton Keynes   60  15  41  4  148  246  34
* League Champions
Challenge Cup Group C Table

 Team GP W L OTSOL GF GA PTS
  Cardiff*  6  5   1   0  31  13  10
  Guildford*  6  4   2  0  24  16  8
  Milton Keynes  6  2   4  0  15  30  4
  Coventry  6  1   5  0  8  19  2

Quarter Final: *Clinched Quarter Final Berth

Quarter final

Game 1:  Sheffield 4 Guildford 4
Game 2:  Guildford 5  Sheffield 4
(Guildford win 9-8 on aggregate)

Semi final

Game 1: Nottingham 2 Guildford 5
Game 2: Guildford 3 Nottingham 1
(Guildford win 8-3 on aggregate)

Final

Belfast 2 Guildford 1 (OT)

Cup Champions: Belfast Giants
Patton Conference Table
 Team GP W L OTSOL GF GA PTS
  Guildford *  18  14  4  2  77  48  29
  Coventry  18  9  9  3  75  73  22
  Manchester  18  8  10  1  55  65  18
  Milton Keynes   18  5  13  0  50  71  12

*Conference Champion

Playoffs

Playoff Quarter Finals: 

Guildford 2 Glasgow 3
Glasgow 0 Guildford 5
(Guildford win 7-3 on aggregate)

Playoff Semi Finals:

Belfast 2 - Guildford 1

Playoff Champions: Cardiff Devils

Player Stats
Player GP G A P PM
 Kruise Reddick  74  30  51  81  46
 Ian Watters  70  40  33  73  78
 John Dunbar  74  17  54  71  22
 Calle Ackered  74  27  33  60  44
 Jesse Craige  74  9  51  60  53
 TJ Foster  60  12  43  55  8
 Brett Ferguson  61  15  33  48  74
 Jamie Crooks  63  22  20  42  18
 Ben Davies  74  17  25  42  28
 Evan Janssen  64  13  14  27  28
 Kevin King  56  9  14  23  53
 Evan Ritt  45  7  15  22  74
 Erik Lindhagen  72  6  13  19  40
 Jez Lundin  72  3  14  17  48
 Jordan Abt  67  6  9  15  53
 Corbin Baldwin  74  1  10  11  88
 Joshua Waller  69  2  8  10  10
 Richard Krogh  69  1  3  4  4
 Kevin Phillips  8  0  0  0  0
 
 
Player MINS GA GAA SHOTS SV % SO
 Travis Fullerton   1781  86   2.90  997  .914  6
 Chris Carrozzi  2585  115  2.67  1253  .908  2
 Mile Will  55  3  3.26  26  .885  0
 Sam Calder  0  0  0  0  0  0
 Jacob Stoodley   0  0  0  0  0  0
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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