Sheffield Steeldogs’ position as financial minnows in the English Premier League was reflected by weekend losses to two of the division’s power brokers.
Dogs, missing four players, fought back from 2-0 down at home to Guildford Flames on Sunday, but eventually lost 3-2 to a team including ex Steelers David Longstaff, Matt Towe and Paul Dixon.
The night before, at Telford Tigers, they were on the end of a bigger hiding, 7-2.
Dogs coach Andre Payette said after the iceSheffield defeat: “I’m proud of the whole team, we worked our tails off.
“I thought one of the (conceded) goals was a bit weak but other than that we battled so hard against a team who brought in two new imports - one has nine NHL games experience.
“Everybody jumped in and did their best. I need our fans to get behind us now, December is a massive month for us, we have a lot of home games and we’ve got to get some wins.
“Next Sunday against Basingstoke is a massive game. I need the people to come along, it really helps the boys when the people are here, so get behind us this holiday season”.
Steve Duncombe, who was pressed into forward playning duties, added: “I really like playing as a forward, it’s a lot more skating and I’m a lot more tired. You get a few more bumps but you have to do what you can for the team at the end of the day”.
Steeldogs are next to bottom of the EPL, with eight wins from 23 games. The top two are Telford and Peterborough.