Sheffield Steeldogs have a psychological advantage over their upcoming Cup semi-final opponents Milton Keynes Lightning after shutting them out 2-0 in EPL play last Saturday.
But a 3-1 defeat at Telford took the gloss off things for team boss Andre Payette.
At Telford, Steeldogs came out full of energy and within 43 seconds, Janis Ozolins skated the length of the ice through to put Steeldogs ahead. The game was halted to clean the ice following a hit from Craig Elliott on Scott McKenzie, to which Joe Graham took exception and they were both binned for roughing. The feisty game continued with another roughing between Chris Sykes and Josh Bruce.
Payette and Croft fought twice, with Payette while Stuart Brittle received a 10 minute misconduct for ice spraying the goalie. However, it was Telford’s turn to raise the heat, taking the period 2-0 with their first goal at 26.21 by Tom Watkins, followed quickly by a short-handed goal at 27.56 from Luke Brittle.
The final period saw an empty net goal sealed the game for Tigers.
On Saturday, penalty killing was strong at Milton Keynes and Steeldogs took an early advantage on a 5-on-3 PP to take the lead as Edgars Bebris scored three minutes into the game, assisted by Ben Morgan and Pavel Gomeniuk. Ozolins put Steeldogs 2-0 up just before the first period break, at 18.37 and assisted by Lloyd Gibson and Morgan. The two goal lead was protected by the Steeldogs during the next 40 minutes.
Dogs are signing a hot Latvian import forward: See tomorrow’s Star.