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Editions

Five teams fighting for four spots

03 Sep 2013

Five teams fighting for four spots Image

By Robert Bremner

With the ice hockey play offs only a few weeks away, five teams are fighting for the top four spots and it seems as though the Mustangs’ brilliant season is going to fall just short of success.

After a fantastic season, the Mustangs appear to be unable to make the play offs with only two weeks remaining in the home and away season. Currently sitting in fifth position, they are seven points shy of the fourth placed Perth Thunder and third placed Melbourne Ice who both sit on 48 points.

They are going to need a lot of luck if they are to jump above one of these teams and the draw has not done them any favours. Next up, the Mustangs face the North Stars away before taking on the Bears also on the road the following day.

To finish the season Melbourne face the North Stars again but this time at the Medibank  Icehouse. To have any chance of making the playoffs they will have to win all three of these matches and hope that other results fall their way.

It has been a season of great improvement with many highlights, including the Mustangs’ first win over the Ice. The final score was 4-2 but doesn’t reflect the defensive pressure that the Mustangs were put under throughout the game. Ice had 33 shots at goal compared with their opposition’s 23, but it was the Mustangs’ accuracy and defensive pressure that proved the deciding factor in the end.

The previous weeks have seen a number of high quality matches, leading into the AIHL play offs.  Sydney Ice Dogs remain on top of the ladder and have cemented themselves as the favourite to take out the prestigious title and halt Melbourne

Ice’s run of being premiers. They are closely followed by Newcastle who last weekend sealed their spot in the play offs with an 8-0 drubbing of bottom placed Canberra who are now riding a whopping 20 game losing streak!

Ice currently sit in third position and need only to win one more game to qualify for the play offs. They have two matches against the Adrenaline away before a final standoff with the North Stars in what could be a potential final. Melbourne are still yet to taste victory against the two sides above them which is a troubling fact heading into the finals. For Melbourne to win their 4th title in a row they are going to have to find a way to get past both of these sides.

The finals between the top four teams will take place on Saturday, September 7 and Sunday, September 8 at the Medibank Icehouse. Let’s hope both Melbourne teams will be there!

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