BASINGSTOKE Buffalo will open their season on Sunday September 7 with a National Ice Hockey League South Two Cup tie against visiting Haringey Racers.

This is the first of three home games for the Buffalo in September, with the cup game followed by the league opener against Bristol Pitbulls (September 21) and then on the last Sunday of the month they face Wightlink Tigers in another cup game. All games have a 6.30pm face-off.

This season South Two has been split into two conferences, East and West, and the Buffalo will play in the West along with Bristol, Cardiff, Swindon and Wightlink.

The top two from this conference will then qualify for the end-of- season play-offs.

The Buffalo are also involved in the cup competition, which is split into two groups of four with two teams from each conference.

Basingstoke have been drawn against Wightlink, Haringey and South East top dogs Slough Jets, who played against the Bison last season.

It looks set to be another exciting year for the Buffalo and most of the last year’s squad are back, including leading goal scorer Greg Martyn and leading points scorer Neil Leary.

They have two new additions from Bracknell, Liam Poulson and Ben Edwards, while Ashley Skinns, brother of Bison goalie Dean Skinns, has returned to the line-up after a year out.

Some of the Buffalo players are set to be in action when the Bison play in the English Challenge Cup when they face National Ice Hockey League South One side’s Invicta, Chelmsford and Wightlink Raiders.