Ice hockey column: Sheffield Steelers’ wonderful night of remembrance

Happiness is a championship trophy
Happiness is a championship trophy
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Winning the Elite League was an explosive, peculiar and unforgettable end to the regular ice hockey season for Sheffield Steelers.

With two games remaining, they had to win at Nottingham Panthers and then beat Cardiff Devils 24 hours later.

A tall order given the unpredictable character of the division this season.

But they managed it - and it was in no small part due to Mathieu Roy, who wrestled ownership of the Panthers’ game when all looked lost.

Nottingham were winning 3-2 with two and a half minutes to go, when the bearded ice Viking plundered an equaliser.

Equally dramatically, with 13 seconds to go of overtime, Roy banged in the winner.

That ensured Sheffield went into the home game with Devils on an absolute high. No Elite team could have stopped them that night, whether they went ahead, as Cardiff did, or not.

The end of the game was old school Steelers: a rampant display of joy and exhibitionism that thrilled the fans.

The most important person that night actually wasn’t there, though. That was Amy Usher, the sweet, witty, clever girl-next-door fan we all loved, but had passed away days earlier.

Nobody on the ice or in the stands could have said it differently or better: That was for you, Amy.