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Basingstoke Bison continue pre-season campaign
THE BASINGSTOKE Bison continue their build-up to the forthcoming season with the Oliveira 4 on 4 Trophy on home ice later today.
Last year the Herd won the popular event and they will be looking to do the same this weekend when the action gets under way at 4.30pm.
Standing between them and retaining the trophy are local English Premier League rivals Bracknell Bees as well as top National League South One sides Wightlink Raiders and Invicta Dynamos.
In the inaugural tournament staged in Basingstoke last September the Bison beat the Bees 3-1 in the final.
A re-match is likely on Saturday evening, but Wightlink and Invicta will be hoping to upset the applecart.
The format of the event will start with the sides playing a round robin competition to start with, each game being of 20 minutes on a running clock with both teams playing with four skaters and a netminder instead of the normal five and a goalie.
At the end of the group the top two teams will then play-off to decide the winners.
The Bison will have many of their new signings on show, while the Bees are likely to have last season’s Herd men Ollie Bronnimann, Sam Oakford and Marcel Petran in their line-up, plus a host of other players who have donned a Basingstoke jersey, which is sure to add extra spice to the game.
Wightlink also have some ex-Bison players in their ranks including Jeremy Cornish, Matt Colclough and Craig Tribe, while in the Invicta ranks are Adam Copland and Callum Best.
Bison player/coach Doug Sheppard is looking forward to the event and said: “Obviously we want to win it again and it will give us a great opportunity with so many new faces in the line-up to try out a number of combinations, which can only be good for our preparations ahead of the season.
“Being four-on-four the games will be wide open, which should make them exciting and great to watch.”