In-form Stewart proud of Coventry Blaze play-off success - The Rugby Observer
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In-form Stewart proud of Coventry Blaze play-off success

Rugby Editorial 8th Apr, 2015 Updated: 27th Oct, 2016

ELITE League Netminder of the Year Brian Stewart said there is no better feeling after he backstopped Blaze to the play-off trophy.

The 30-year-old Canadian, who was also selected in the First All-Star team, made 35 saves as Blaze beat Sheffield Steelers 4-2 in the final at the National Ice Centre on Sunday.

It was enough for Stewart – named the Coach’s Player of the Year, the Player of the Year, the Players’ Player of the Year and Best Defenceman for Blaze – to pick up the man of the match award which capped a dazzling debut season in the UK.

He said: “We had a good start to the season and then everything went downhill for the next two months. We were losing games and everyone was struggling.

“But then (coach) Chuck (Weber) came in in mid-December and it took a while to get things going and for us to follow his systems. But we bought in and everything changed.

“Our goal was to make the play-offs, we got to sixth spot and got Nottingham and we knew it was going to be a battle. Then we had Belfast and Sheffield so we took down the big three, we played our game and the guys have played so hard.

“I could not be more proud of them. There is no better feeling, the guys battled right to the end.”

Stewart has been pleased with his performances this season, which were acknowledged by the league.

He added: “Even when we were losing games I thought I was playing well personally even though the results were not showing. We then started winning games and people were talking and it was awesome the league recognised that and it is an honour- but nothing beats lifting that trophy.

“The weekend lived up to the expectations I heard about. The fans from all over the UK were just awesome, it was one of the coolest experiences.”

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