Bison keen to avoid Phantom menace

Joe Miller scored a hat-trick against Peterborough earlier in the season.

Joe Miller scored a hat-trick against Peterborough earlier in the season.

First published in Sport by , Sports Reporter

THE Basingstoke Bison will be looking to keep the pressure up on new English Premier League leaders Guildford as they face a double header weekend against the Peterborough Phantoms.

The Herd – currently second in the table – lead the series over their Cambridgeshire rivals 3-1. This weekend the first game is at home on Saturday (face-off 6.30pm) with the return in Peterborough on Sunday (face-off 5.30pm).

The Bison currently are in great home form, which has seen them only defeated once in 14 games.

In contrast on the road the Herd have suffered five straight losses, two of which have been after penalties.

The Phantoms, who are battling for a play-off spot, will arrive in Basingstoke full of confidence having won in Manchester after overtime last Sunday and, at home, have won three and lost two after shoot-outs in their last five games.

Peterborough lost on their last visit to Basingstoke 5-3 in early December, but a week earlier on home ice they won 6-3 with Latvian import Maris Ziedins netting the only hat-trick against the Herd this season.

Previous to that the Phantoms lost 4-0 on their first visit to Basingstoke as Joe Miller netted a hat-trick and then, on their first visit to Peterborough, the Herd won 2-1.

Bison player/coach Doug Sheppard is hoping his team can secure a four point weekend, but is not expecting an easy ride.

Sheppard said: “We have to make sure we play as we can do against the Phantoms otherwise they are going to beat us.

“Peterborough is a tough place to go, but we need to get our road form going.”

The Herd’s British defenceman Kurt Reynolds is one of the 12 nominations for the 2012 Gazette Sports Personality of the Year and the Bison boss was pleased to see his name on the list.

Sheppard said: “He is a local lad and has been really solid at the back for us this season and deserves to be a nomination.”

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