DEFENCEMAN Ben Nethersell has revealed spirits in the Swindon Wildcats locker room remain high, despite last weekend’s one-goal aggregate loss to Basingstoke Bison in the semi-final of the South Cup.

Ashley Tait’s Bison edged Wildcats 9-8 over the two-legged semi-final, leaving the Link Centre outfit’s hopes of silverware this season pinned on the league and play-off championships.

The 21-year-old praised the work-rate of last weekend’s opponents and admitted revenge is wanted on Bison in the two outstanding league fixtures.

Nethersell said: “It was a positive weekend, even though we lost out by a goal.

“The hockey was really good, it was unfortunate that we missed out by such a small margin. But I think it has helped us to grow as a team and we're certainly ready for next weekend.

“Morale is very high at the moment, we’re a tight group – everyone is playing good and feeling good too.

“Sunday proved that – we needed four goals and we came back to within one. That proved our character, and I think we’re in good form.

“We need to take that into next weekend.

“Basingstoke are coached very well and are achieving as a result of their shake-up in the summer.

“It was good to play them, and we still have to play them a lot in the league – they will be good games.”

Aaron Nell’s side are currently enjoying a eight-game winning streak in NIHL South One – a run that has ultimately re-ignited the club’s hopes of winning the league title.

Peterborough Phantoms trail Wildcats by a point, but do have a game in hand - making this weekend’s fixtures against Bracknell and the Phantoms key.

Nethersell added: “We need to keep winning – we’re not too worried about who we’re playing.

“Adopting the one game at a time approach will serve us well, the league is competitive now and you can’t take anyone for granted.

“It doesn’t matter who you’re playing.

“Jonas (Hoog) has slotted in perfectly. He has brought something we previously lacked, we’re a bit more offensive now.

“He played well at the weekend, and he suits the way we’re playing this year.”