Storm’s Byers wins EIHL player of the week award

Manchester Storm forward Dane Byers has been named the Elite League’s Player of the Week for period ending 4th February 2018.

The 31-year-old picked up an 11-point haul in an impressive week that saw Storm take their unbeaten run to four after wins over MK Lightning, Coventry Blaze and Sheffield Steelers.

And he is hopeful he, along with his line-mates can have a solid end to the season as they sit perched in third place, three points behind Belfast Giants in second.

“The wins are huge for us right now and we’re trying to make a push,” Byers said. “We’re playing well as a team right now and the systems we’re playing have been good for us.

“We dipped a little in the middle of the season, but we were still picking up points here and there if we weren’t winning.

“‘Moff’ (Luke Moffatt) and I have been on a line all year then adding a player like (Mike) Hammond, who is probably one of the more skilled guys I’ve ever came across, has been good for us and the team.

“If we can keep it going, the way its gone for us, we can have a really strong finish to the year.

“Our goal is to aim for the top spot for sure. Whether we can do it is something else, but we’ll see what happens.”

Byers joined the club from DEL2 side Koïner Haie in Germany at the start of the season and his all-action, physical style is one favoured by the fans.

This week, he scored the equalising goal on Wednesday that led to Manchester going on to take a 4-1 victory over Milton Keynes Lightning.

He followed that up with two goals and three assists in Saturday’s 9-1 thumping of Coventry Blaze then added one and four in Sunday’s 7-5 triumph at Sheffield Steelers.

It takes his tally for the season to 61 points in 47 appearances, scoring 21 and assisting in 40 for Ryan Finnerty’s side.

The Storm coach paid tribute to his forward and reckoned he had a couple of contenders for the award this week.

Finnerty said: “The Byers-Moffatt-Hammond line had a great week and were a big reason we had the success we did.

“‘Byz’ played a big part in each of the three victories and I’m delighted his contribution has been recognised in this way.

“Mike Hammond and Luke Moffat also had great weekends and would have been contenders too, which shows just good a week we’ve had.

“Those three in particular carried us to victory on Sunday as we continue to aim towards the top of this league.”

Photo: Mark Ferriss

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