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Ice hockey: Disappointed Deeside Dragons coach Steve Fellows considers his options after mid-season wobbles

STEVE Fellows will sit down with his coaching staff over the next few weeks and reassess the Deeside Dragons’ squad after a run of disappointing displays.

The latest below par performance came on Sunday as the North Two side suffered a 9-2 home defeat to North One leaders Solway Sharks in the group stage of the National League North Cup (West).

While player-coach Fellows didn’t go into the game expecting a victory, he had hoped for a better performance than he received.

“I just didn’t think as a team we played to our potential,” he said. “There were moments where we showed what we are capable of and some of the young lads I brought in like Chris Varney and Ryan Jones got good experience. But I expected more guys to step up and use the game to prove that they could compete at a higher level and they didn’t do that.”

Solway tucked away three goals in each period at Deeside Ice Rink in front of a big crowd who had been starved of a home game for a month due to the vagaries of the fixture list.

Andy Chappell pulled a goal back in the second period for the Dragons and Shaun Kippin also found the net in the third.

But the Dragons now face a mini-break of a fortnight before travelling to face Solway again, in Dumfries on December 15.

While ice hockey fans in Deeside get the chance to enjoy a charity game between the Dragons and Flintshire Phantoms on Sunday (6.30pm) in aid of Help For Heroes, Fellows, with assistant coach Ric Hughes and coach Mark Hobson, will be pondering how to get the Dragons’ promotion campaign back on track.

“Nottingham Lions have dropped points at the top which helps us,” said Fellows. “But we need to look at everything again. I had a plan when I took over in the summer but I am a rookie coach myself and I have to learn how to adapt.

“We have lost players to suspension, injury and some have simply left. That happens but it means we are not the same team we were at the start of the season when we were winning.

“Our confidence seems to have been shaken and, unlike other clubs, our youth guys are not quite ready to step up yet.

“Over the next few weeks we will look at the training, the players we have we will even consider whether to bring in new blood to replenish the squad in time for the new year.”

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