Sheffield Steelers’ pursuit for a more ruthless approach in front of goal wasn’t totally reflected against Manchester Storm today - but at least they dug out two points.
Mid-table Storm, who came into the game on the back of four straight wins, hit the post twice and were unlucky not to have taken advantage of a flat-looking home side.
Sheffield winger Colton Fretter was also hit in the upper body by a team-mate’s shot and skated off the ice in obvious discomfort.
Patrik Valcak and Darian Dziuryznski hit both posts as Storm breezed up the ice, backed by a noisy away following.
Steelers came close a couple of times.
Valcak gave the puck away and Robert Dowd had a decent skate and shot at goal.
And Davey Phillips, booed by the away fans, delivered a decent check on the boards on Cody Cartier.
Neither side could find the net before the first interval.
Fretter returned to the ice, only to be boarded by Dallas Ehrhardt and injured again.
However, as Storm already had a man in the penalty box, Sheffield had a 5-on-3 advantage.
And a clever passing move set up Guillaume Desbiens who made it 1-0 at 24;58.
Zack Fitzgerald went after Erhardt, although it would have been just as valid to dish out some punishment to Taylor Dinkin, whose stick had been dangerously high seconds before the clash.
Jonathan Phillips, Ben O’Connor and Levi Nelson all had chances to increase Steelers’ lead, but failed to find the formula.
Mike Ratchuk hit the bar too - but it was Storm who went on the scoresheet next, Dziurzynski levelling at 49;33 from close range.
It was anybody’s game.
But the telling blow came from Levi Nelson who scored on the Power Play with a minute left.
While it was not totally convincing - and the injury to Fretter is a concern - at least Steelers won, after losing their last two.
Steelers travel to Altrincham for a return fixture tomorrow.
Saturday 31st December
Edinburgh Capitals 3 Fife Flyers 6
Nottingham Panthers 5 Coventry Blaze 6 (OT)
Sheffield Steelers 2 Manchester Storm 1
Sunday 1st January
Cardiff Devils v Dundee Stars – 4.00pm
Manchester Storm v Sheffield Steelers – 5.30pm
Monday 2nd January
Belfast Giants v Coventry Blaze – 4.00pm
Fife Flyers v Braehead Clan – 6.00pm
Nottingham Panthers v Edinburgh Capitals – 4.00pm