Sheffield Steeldogs had another up and down weekend, mixing a fang-tastic Halloween win with a defensive horror show on Sunday.
Saturday's visit from local rivals and new kids on the EPL block, the Hull Pirates saw a 5-4 home win and a game high on energy, passion and drama.
Steeldogs opened the scoring early with Ashley Calvert finding the net from close range after 95 seconds.
Pirates new signing Pasi Salonen tied it up before a late Lascek strike sent the Steeldogs in to the break with a lead.
Hull took charge in the second period, winning the session 2-1 to set up a hard fought third period. Both teams had power play opportunities to take the lead but neither managed. However Hull did capitalise as Salonen left the box at the end of a penalty, breaking away to score and send the visiting fans into ecstasy with little over four minutes left to play. The challenge didn't get any easier for the Dogs when Lewis Bell was ejected for a high stick, leaving Sheffield short-handed for the remainder of the game.
Steeldogs threw everything at Pirates net minder Jon Baston and with bodies surrounding him he stayed down after a whistle. This gave the Dogs a chance to take a breather and review the situation and it worked - Lascek credited with the tying mark at 58.56. The game seemed destined for extra time but when Baston rushed way out of his net to retrieve a puck he let Bosas in - only to be taken out by a Hull D man.
After a lengthy discussion the referee awarded a penalty shot which #33 buried in style giving the Steeldogs the win with just eight seconds remaining.
Captain Ben Morgan said: “We've talked about team resilience this season and tonight was an example of that. With a couple of minutes left in the game we are down and playing 5 on 3, you have a man thrown out of the game and you're thinking doom and gloom. But we've come back to win it with 8 seconds left on the clock. We have the belief in the room that we can play, that we can win. We've got a pack of teams we want to be competing with and we have to be winning these games. We've come out of the game with 2 points and that's what we aim for”.
Coach Greg Wood added “the game was a little disappointing from my perspective, Hull were a little hard done by at the end but we should have been given either the technical goal or indeed the penalty shot. We had to show some resilience towards the end of the game. In the first period we were very comfortable but we need to take more of our chances and not let teams in. We've come away with the points but the performance wasn't great”.
Sunday in Telford and reigning champions, fresh from a night off, looked in a different class to the Steeldogs.
Without Morgan to marshal the defence they were 4-0 down at the end of a one-sided first period. A slight rally in the second (including another Bosas penalty shot) only seemed to re-invigorate the Tigers and they didn't let up. Dalibor Sedlar retreated to the bench at 10-3 down with back-up Tom Barkworth playing the last ten minutes.
A final score of 13-3 highlighting the Jekyll and Hyde nature of the 2015/16 Steeldogs.
Coach Wood will need to make sure the good side is back for next Sunday when the Bracknell Bees come to iceSheffield.