Widnes Wild seal third place in NIHL Division One

Vlads Vulkanov puts the pressure on against the Blackburn Hawks. Credit: Widnes Wild

It’s official Widnes Wild have sealed third place in Division One North with two games to spare.

With Solway Sharks sealing their title victory following a 9-1 victory over Sheffield Scimitars we’re starting to see how the play-off ties may look.

Related: “Good teams find a way to win,” says Solway Head Coach Martin Grubb

As it stands Solway, Whitley Warriors and Widnes are confirmed as the top three in the division.

Scimitars, Solihull Barons and Billingham Stars are all in contention for that fourth-place finish in the table.

Finally, it looks as though Blackburn Hawks and Nottingham Lions will finish in seventh and eighth place respectively.

The Lions can finish no higher than seventh so will be either Solway or Whitley’s opponent in the play-offs.

The Hawks would need Billingham to lose all their remaining games to even stand a chance of moving out of seventh.

This more than likely will not be the case as Billingham are in good form, this would leave Blackburn to face Whitley.

Widnes could have either Solihull or Billingham in their play-off tie as those two sides fight between them for a higher finish.

The Scimitars would face whichever of these two sides finishes in fifth providing they managed to maintain fourth.

Play-offs in April

This would make for some interesting play-off ties in the summer with the middle of the table full of quality.

For Widnes who are the new team in the division a third-place finish is a fantastic result.

They sealed that position with a four-point weekend beating Blackburn and Billingham 5-2.

With this result they can now try to seal out their season strong with an away trip to Billingham and a final home game against Sheffield.

A win over the Scimitars on the final day of the regular season would send them into the play-offs feeling confident.

Nottingham Despair

At the other end of the table Nottingham Lions have had a poor season, picking up just the six wins.

One of these was over the eventual winners; Solway but they never seemed to replicate that performance.

With all teams having either one or two games left to play, the play-off ties will soon be known.

Follow along for more on our Twitter @BritIceHockey.

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