Sunday 17 August 2014

Widnes Wild NIHL N2 Season Preview

After an amazing first season in the NiHL Laidler Conference it looks like the 2014/15 season is going to be even more exciting for the Widnes Wild and our fans, known throughout British hockey as the Wild Ones.

The season kicks off on Saturday 6th September with our first home game against reigning league champions, the Solihull Barons, and the only team the Wild didn’t beat at least once last season. This is followed on the Sunday with another home game against the Blackburn Eagles.

The following weekend see’s the Wild take their first road trip of the season away at Deeside for a huge game against our local rivals before returning home the following Sunday to play against the Coventry Blaze.

It’s not until the 26th October that the ‘Wild face one of the two new teams in the league, the Bradford Bulldogs in a fixture that’ll be staged in Bradford at a very different rink to our home rink. Fans unable to travel will have to wait until the first home game of the New Year, 10th January, to get a glimpse for the Bulldogs.

The other new team to the league for the 2014/15 season, the Telford Tigers will get to visit Widnes two weekends in a row, meeting for the Wild for the first time on the 23rd November and then again on the 30th November with both games taking place in Widnes.

At the game on the 30th the ‘Wild will be asking fans to “toss a teddy” in aid of local children’s charities. When the first goal of the game is scored fans will be asked to throw a teddy bear onto the ice which the ‘Wild players can then give to disadvantaged children from the local area.

On the 20th December fans and players will invite Sheffield Senators and hockey fans from throughout the area to celebrate Christmas together in a night of hockey and Christmas joy.

To end the season the ‘Wild will play four home games in a row in March against Blackburn, Bradford, Coventry and Deeside before going on two road trips against Hull and then Bradford.

The full fixture list can be found  

Mick Caunce, the ‘Wilds GM said; “last year was really good. Although we started the season inconsistently we gelled really well after Christmas and were one of the form teams leading up to the playoffs. This season will be even better as we have built on solid foundations and put together a strong team with a great ethic.”

Wild Head Coach, Mark Gillingham, added; “Our target is to challenge for promotion to the Moralee conference and we have put together a team that is more than capable of achieving the target. We have the most vocal fans in the league and a rink that provides an amazing atmosphere. The people of Widnes, Runcorn, Merseyside and Cheshire have embraced ice hockey, and especially the ‘Wild, and I’m sure the players will reward them by giving them an exciting season”.

by Dick Gillingham