Player knocked out
Coach says scenes on rink ‘unbelievable’
The Southern Stampede captain is slamming Canterbury ice hockey after star player Matt Schneider was knocked out with a punch to the face on Saturday night.
In the first games for the season the Queenstown-based side lost on Saturday and Sunday 4-2 to the Canterbury Red Devils, in Christchurch.
Captain Bert Haines said the first game was tight and there were missed opportunities. However, the second was ‘‘unbelievable’’.
‘‘We carried most of the play for the entire game really. We had the refs kind of steal the game from us.’’
Near the end of the second period Canterbury player Hayden Argyle sucker punched Stampede player Schneider, shortly after breaking his stick on Schneider’s arm.
‘‘Hayden got kicked out of the game but we lost our star player to injury and then they managed to give out three 10-minute misconducts to our players.’’
Called out were Mike McRae after he stepped into the fight and there was some pushing and shoving between him and Argyle, Braden Lee who came off the bench to ensure Schneider was OK and Quinn Drake who was escorting medical staff onto the ice.
‘‘It’s unbelievable,’’ Haines said.
The incidents caused a massive swing in the game, he said.
‘‘We started the period with two top guys in the box, one kicked out of the game (McRae) and one on the way to hospital.’’
Red Devils head coach Stacey Rout, a former star of the Stampede, said his team were also disappointed in the punch inflicted on Schneider.
Schneider was playing to the whistle and was in close proximity to the goal defender attempting to score with half time looming.
‘‘Hayden took exception to that and came and gave Matt a punch to the face,’’ he said.
Argyle was feeling ‘‘pretty bad’’ about the incident and would miss at least two games. It could be more after the national tribunal considered the case this week.
Rout had since rewatched the game video and said Schneider was knocked out before he hit the ice.
‘‘That’s not the type of hockey that we want to be playing.’’
It was also clear to him that the 10-minute penalties imposed on Lee and Drake as well as two Red Devils players in the aftermath to the punch were unjustified.
‘‘We’ve already communicated our displeasure to the league about the types of calls,’’ he said.
Schneider appeared to recovering well. The team’s next games are against the Dunedin Thunder at the Queenstown Ice Rink during Winter Festival. Turning out for the Southern Stampede on the weekend was a home coming for Wakatipu High School student Callum Burns after a sensational international season.
Burns made his mark on our national ice hockey team scoring his first goal on debut at the recent division two world champs.
Playing Turkey in Spain, 17-yearold Burns put the team in a handy position as he put the Ice Blacks in front with a limited amount of time left.
‘‘It wasn’t exactly a cool or flashy goal, but it got the job done,’’ he said, as the team went on to win the game 6-3.
The goal made Callum the second youngest player to score for the Ice Blacks.
Burns was ‘‘honoured’’ to be named in the team to compete at the IIHF tournament in March for the first time, especially after already being named to play in the under 18 and under 20 New Zealand team in Turkey and Bulgaria earlier this year.
With the Ice Blacks having high expectations to do well in the tournament, they were ‘‘bitterly disappointed,’’ with the loss to Belgium, which prevented them from making the final. They still managed to grab the bronze with a couple of wins to end the tournament.
With the majority of his international commitments concluded for the year, Burns is back in Queenstown playing left wing for local favourites the Southern Stampede, including taking the ice on the weekend against the Canterbury Red Devils.
Team captain Bert Haines said Burns had a couple of great games.
While Burns would love to pursue a hockey career he is also conscious of having some skills to fall back on.
Next year he is planning to pursue is hockey career in Canada.
‘‘I just wanted the time to purely focus on my hockey with no school and no other attachments, to see where it takes me, I guess.’’
Knocked out: Southern Stampede player Matt Schneider, pictured in 2013, was knocked out by a punch to his head by Red Devils player Hayden Argyle on Saturday night.
Ice skills: Wakatipu High School student Callum Burns is making his mark on international ice hockey.