Murrayfield Racers are back in Stuart Robertson Cup action tomorrow night, in a home match against Paisley Pirates, looking to defend the trophy they won, along with the Scottish National League title, in a successful debut season for the new Edinburgh club.
Racers have won all four of their previous games in the South qualifying group, and victory against last season’s SNL play-off winning Pirates will all but seal top-spot ahead of the semi-finals.
Pirates’ play-off final success was the last time the two teams played a competitive match, but that result will have no bearing on tomorrow’s game according to Racers net-minder Mark McGill.
McGill said: “Paisley are a tough team who beat us in the (play-off) final last year, we played them in pre-season and they worked hard against us again. We’ll need to make sure we’re at the top of our game because we want to win the group and be the higher seeded team (going in to the knock-out stages).”
Despite winning two trophies last season, Racers added seven new faces in the summer and recently picked up net-minder Craig Douglas from Elite League side Fife Flyers.
McGill had been quick to reference Paisley’s play-off win, however when asked if that game would be in the mind of the players tomorrow, he continued: “I wouldn’t say so, that was last season and it’s a completely different team we’ve got now. I know it was a final and it was annoying, but that’s just the way it goes, we’re feeling confident going into the
Last time out Racers were beaten 6-2 at home by Billingham Stars in the National Ice Hockey League North Cup, 24 hours after losing 5-4 at Solway Sharks in the same competition, Solway’s winner scored just six seconds from time. It was the same story three weeks ago at Murrayfield, Sharks winning 4-3, again their winner was scored six seconds from time.
McGill said: “We had two really hard games against Solway, and to lose both of them with just six seconds to go was annoying but it shows we can compete in that league.
“Against Billingham, we must have been tired, we ran out of legs. it was a late night getting back from Solway, not really a good enough excuse, but we can still be confident going down to Billingham (for the return round-robin group fixture) because we just weren’t at our best.”