Running with the Herd – Bison vs Sheffield Steeldogs 24/2/13Posted: 24/02/2013
Basingstoke Bison 0-3 Sheffield Steeldogs
Sorry folks, not today. I can’t sit here and write this up as I normally would. To pretend that all is business as normal would feel intellectually dishonest and this is my blog. I write on here how I see the game and today I don’t want to sit here and natter away like this was something I was happy to have paid my money to see.
I’m not going to lay into Tim Pickett and Stefan Hogarth for their officiating last night. Did I agree with some of what was called and what wasn’t? No, I can honestly say I didn’t but when greeted with what both teams offered up in this game and the fact there was only the two of them, they deserve my thanks for turning up and doing what they’re paid to do.
The Sheffield Steeldogs do deserve a bit of credit, they did win the game after all. Lubomir Korhorn and Dalibor Sedlar were stellar last night and I’ll tip my hat to them.
We all know that there’s a gameplan for the Steeldogs. They have set themselves up similar to how they did last season; one good scorer (Korhorn), talented keeper (Sedlar) and the rest run around, crash and bang. That’s the liberal interpretation of it at any rate because what we saw last night was Broad Street reborn in Basingstoke last night. Being physical is part of hockey but there is a line which was crossed last night time and again. Calvert and Hirst were rightfully tossed from the game for their actions but spearing players off the play, offering out an entire team’s bench and just a sheer lack at times to play anything resembling meaningful hockey. As the road team we are not owed entertaining play by Sheffield but they do owe us an attempt to play rather than recreate an homage to Ogie Oglethorpe. I salute the victory but the end does not justify the means.
As for the Bison, it was the perfect storm of annoyance and iniquity. Symonds injured, match penalties including one that we didn’t need to take and playing right into the infuriating game plan of our visitors. The effort was there but there was no direction, no jump and no bite.
I have sat through a lot watching this team. I once travelled 80 minutes from my mother’s house, watched us lose 10-0 then went back to my mother’s but I have never seen a performance so bad that people walked out early. That happened last night.
There are games like this in hockey, it’s part of the sport but there has to be a response. We’ve had a run of lack lustre performances recently, this has to be the bottom of the barrel.
Leave the league title and the playoffs to one side, this team needs to find a way to play like we and they know they can if they even want to win a game at the moment. Yes they are tired, yes they are hurting but if this team wants something out of the season, last night cannot happen again. On what should have been a night of celebration, the Bison shot themselves in the foot and it was nothing but painful to watch.
Normal service will hopefully resume next week. I’m off to find a brain slug to put into my ear in an attempt to forget last night.
Photos courtesy and copywrite of Grant King and 5 Hole Photography. Visit his site, buy a photo, tell him BOTW sent you.