Ranson ready for tough London Raiders weekend
PUBLISHED: 17:00 09 December 2016 | UPDATED: 17:39 09 December 2016
Forward hopes for points against Milton Keynes and Chelmsford
London Raiders forward Jacob Ranson is looking forward to a tough National League double-header this weekend.
Short-benched Raiders had to work hard for a 3-2 win over Bracknell last weekend, but host MK Thunder tomorrow (Saturday, 5.30pm) and then visit leaders Chelmsford the following night.
And Ranson, 21, believes Alan Blyth’s side can pick up more points, if they go about things the right way.
He said: “Saturday will be a tough game, MK work hard and have a lot of speed throughout their team.
“They never give up, always battle for loose pucks and have a great spirit in the changing room, so we will need to bring our A game as it won’t be a walkover.
“They’ve been picking up good results and running the big guns in the league close, but I’m still pretty confident we can come away with two points, if we stick to our game-plan and work hard.”
Raiders won 4-0 on their previous trip to Milton Keynes, when Euan King earned a shut out on his first appearance back in a gold and blue jersey.
Ranson had a brief spell with the Thunder himself two seasons ago and admitted it will be good to see some familiar faces, adding: “It’s always fun playing against an old team of yours and former team-mates, as it gives you a point to prove.
“I have a lot of respect for MK, as they gave me the ice-time I was searching for in this league a few years ago, but that doesn’t mean there will be any softness or friends on the ice!”
Raiders will looking to make it three wins in a row against fierce rivals Chelmsford on Sunday, having already enjoyed home-and-away success in the cup competition.
The two sides are set to meet in the semi-finals in February, but league points are on the line this weekend and Ranson added: “We’ve had their number in the cup so far this season, but they’re still unbeaten in the league and running away with it.
“I’m hoping on Sunday we can bring them down a peg with a big performance. Last time we played in Chelmsford, the fans were amazing and really loud, which I felt played a big part in us coming away with the win.”
Raiders will hope to have more players available this weekend, after facing Bracknell with only 11 skaters last weekend.
Sam Roberts struck twice around the midway mark to put them on top, but the Hornets hit back with a quickfire brace from Ondrej Pekarik to level, before Slavomir Buda’s gamewinner in the final period.
Ranson said: “It was great to see Sammy get on the scoresheet twice against Bracknell, as he works his socks off every game and is always a positive character in the room, no matter what.
“Slavo’s goal was important, not only because it was the winner, but I think it will give him a massive boost of confidence down the stretch before Christmas.
“It was his first goal in a few games and I think he’ll kick on again now with plenty more.”