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Cup draw a family affair for Whistle

The Belfast Giants can be pleased with results from their recent hectic roadtrip.

Belfast Giants goalkeeper Jackson Whistle blocks a shot from the Fife Flyers’ Brandon Magee. Whistle was called upon to do goals after Tyler Beskorowany picked up an injury during the Giants 7-0 defeat of the Dundee Stars. Picture: Fife Flyers Images

With four games in a trot, they game out the winners in three of the games. Plus they now sit in second place after the Cardiff Devils slipped up against the Nottingham Panthers.

But it was a roadtrip with a few headaches, forward Jordan Boucher had to sit the games out, while netminder Tyler Beskorowany picked up an injury after rolling his ankle while coming out to play the puck during the second game against the Dundee Stars.

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The injury led to Jackson Whistle having to take Besko’s place between the pipes and he did himself proud recording a shutout in the 6-0 victory against the Stars and helped the Giants to a penalty shootout win against the Fife Flyers the following night.

Speaking after returning from the roadtrip Whistle said: “The whole week went really well. As a team I think we came together really well. We are all pretty happy to get seven points out of a possible eight.

“The team bonded well over the entire roadtrip. The guys played hard and we saw as the week went on, as you’d expect some got a little tired, but we battled through the fatigue.

Everyone on the team is delighted to go into second place and are focused on winning the league said Whistle.

“We have our focus right now on first place. That is the goal for the year. Going into second place moves that goal just one step closer.”

He added: “We are going to keep on nipping away at Sheffield’s heels and chase them down.

“We will get our chance against Sheffield later, right now we are just going to worry about taking it one day at a time, practice by practice and game by game, and when our chance comes were are going to take it.”

Reflecting on the on Besko’s injury against the Star, Whistle said: “It was unlucky, he went out to play the puck and just tripped up. It was one of those freak accidents that can happen to anyone on any night.

“Thankfully I believe he isn’t doing to bad and shouldn’t be out to long. The plan had always been for me to play the Sunday night game against Fife regardless of what happened but obviously with the injury I had to gone into goals on the Saturday night too.”

Looking forward to the Giants’ upcoming semi-final game against the Panthers at the SSE. It will be a match with added interest in the Whistle family. Most recently Jackson’s father Dave, an ex Giant’s coach, has taken up a post with the hard-pressed Panthers.

“I can’t wait to see him on the other side of the bench during that game.

“It is pretty funny to be honest, we have been talking about it on the phone, what with dad being in Nottingham, my brother Brandon playing for the Steelers and myself with the Giants, it makes for interesting conversation for sure.

“I am really looking forward to getting a chance to play against him.”