Stingrays ready to take on the Giants

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HULL Stingrays completed their pre-season preparations ahead of their Elite League opener in Belfast on Friday by lifting the P&O Cup in Coventry.

Success came after wins over Dutch sides, 8-2 against Tilburg Trappers and a 7-1 win over Geleen Eaters.

Player-coach Sylvain Cloutier - who dropped the gloves in Saturday’s fiesty encounter against Tilburg - said his team had got the workout they were looking for and were now fully concentrating on their trip to Northern Ireland at the end of the week.

By the time his team travels across the Irish Sea, Cloutier will have had most of them in place for a full two weeks - a stark contrast to last year when the club’s temporary off-ice collapse severely hampered their pre-season preparations.

As well as two games against Coventry - one won, the other drawn - the Stingrays also got a good physical workout against EPL side Sheffield Steeldogs, who they shared the honours with in a 5-5 draw.

“From day one I have said we need to play for 60 minutes to have any success,” said Cloutier, “I feel like I keep repeating myself but if you compete and work hard you will give yourselves a chance to win.

“These five games have given us a chance to work on our systems and get the guys into game-shape. Now we will train hard all week and get ready for Belfast.”

Daniel Scott scored the only goal of the first period against Geleen before two goals inside 104 seconds in the second period stretched Stingrays’ lead with Dominic Osman’s marker being followed by a powerplay strike from Dmitry Rodin.

Derek Campbell (2), Matty Davies and Jereme Tendler added further markers.

Tendler, last season’s leading marksman, struck a hat-trick in Saturday’s demolition of Tilburg. Hull’s other goals came from Campbell (2), Cloutier, Ryan Lake and Jason Silverthorn.