Scott Aarssen is looking to help lead Fife Flyers back to winning ways after a month to forget.
Flyers only recorded two wins during October, which included a 10-3 humiliation at the hands of Sheffield Steelers and culminated with a 4-1 home defeat to Belfast Giants on Wednesday.
As one of the team’s most experienced players, 31-year-old Aarssen says he aims to show leadership qualities to help pull the side out of its current rut.
“Being a leader is something that I take seriously,” the Canadian defenceman said.
“It’s not just being one of the older guys in the room, I’ve always looked at myself as a leader with teams I’ve played with in the past.
“I like to lead by example, on the ice and in the dressing room, and hope that other guys will follow that lead and look to me.
“If they need anything they can come to me and I’ll try to be open with my team mates.
“We’ve got such a good group in there. We’ve got so many guys that are born leaders, you can tell that.
“That’s another reason why we’re not getting too panicked or worried right now. We know we’re going to have to stick with it and not get too frustrated.”
Aarssen is adamant that even though results have not gone their way, Flyers have shown enough quality to prove that they will soon pick up some positive results.
“The results haven’t gone our way for some of the games we’ve been playing this month but we’ve played well in some of them.
“We’ve stuck to our systems really well and I think there’s been a couple of games where we didn’t get the result we should have.
“We talk about that. Sometimes in hockey that’s the way it goes. You have nights where you maybe don’t play your game, or as well as you think you should, but you end up getting the win, but it can go the other way as well.
“I think it’s just been unfortunate at times for us, we’ve been getting the short end of the stick, but at the same time it’s still up to us to steady the ship.
“Whether it be a big play defensively or getting the chance to score and putting the puck home, we need to take advantage of those type of opportunities.
“I think the important thing is that people are sticking together in the dressing room and we remain confident in ourselves as a team and a group, and in our abilities.
“I think if we keep working at the rate we’re working at and continue to up the level even more every time we step on the ice, we’re going to create our own luck.
“Something’s got to give eventually. It’s in our own hands and we’re not getting too down on ourselves.”
Understandably, Aarssen admits to some frustration in the dressing room at the Fife Ice Arena, saying: “Anytime you lose a handful of games it is tough. Our goal is to win every game.
“Every game is important in this league, especially this year, you can see every game is so tight. Across the league anyone can beat anyone so that makes every game even bigger, every time we play.
“A hockey season is long and there’s always going to be ups and downs, especially in a league like this where it is really tight. It doesn’t seem like anyone is running away with it yet.
“So some guys might be a little frustrated because they’re not playing to their full potential, but I think there might be other guys who are frustrated because they are playing well but the end product isn’t coming through.
“But when it gets to that point you just have to stick with it. You have to dig down and work harder, whether that’s off the ice or at practice, but especially in games.”