Sheffield Steeldogs finally re-discovered the secret of winning both games in a weekend as they sent Guildford home defeated and then returned victorious from a tough trip to Bracknell.
The 4-1 win over the Flames was built on patience and discipline in a game that both sides look determined not to give up an easy goal. Guildford broke the deadlock just past halfway mark but a Bosas power play marker set up another exciting final period at iceSheffield.
Solid netminding and clinical finishing gave the Steeldogs the lead which they not only held on to but extended. Andy Hirst followed Lascek and Squires on to the score sheet and gave Greg Wood’s side a fourth home win in five games.
Paul Dixon will be disappointed that his team didn’t make more from the 45 shots they fired on Dalibor Sedlar and to concede four goals on 27 shots.
Goal scorer Tom Squires said: “I think the guys were brilliant . In previous seasons Guildford are a team we have struggled against, but we have taken five points from six and if you had offered that at the start of the season we’d have snapped your hands off! We are deserving those victories against the likes of Guildford, against Milton Keynes.
“The difference is that we are playing as a unit, we are not playing as two D men and three forwards, we are five skaters and we are not leaving Dali hung out to dry. We are defending properly in our zone, picking up guys and getting in lanes. We are then taking our chances when we get them.
"All three lines are contributing; we are able to have guys step up into the lines when needed, just like Cole Shudra did tonight. All the lines are able to get us going and release some energy”.
Sunday night in Bracknell got off to a bad start with top scorer Bosas ejected after 48 seconds for a high sticking penalty - with Callum Pattison already sitting out for 14 minutes having taken issue with the Bees rough treatment of Lubomir Korhon.
Steeldogs worked hard and killed off the penalties and then got to grips with the game; Korhon and Hirst both scoring to send them in to the break up by two goals.
Tom Squires increased the margin before Antonov notched for the Bees. A Lewis Bell goal made it 4-1 before a torrid end to the game with Bracknell scoring twice and Korhon getting a match penalty for roughing as his frustrations with a night full of hooking and slashing boiled over.
The Steeldogs held on to take the win 4-3 and complete their second four point weekend of the campaign.
Two good team performances backed up by strong netminding from Dalibor Sedlar who faced 92 shots but was only beaten four times. The team will look to take that form in to next weekend when they play Bracknell twice, starting at home on Saturday.
Coach Greg Wood took some real satisfaction from the win and the weekend overall; “We had a really good road performance, stuck to the task and played really disciplined. We had to dig deep in places and the guys who were out on the penalty kills tonight were blocking shots, getting in shooting lanes. The guys had to do whatever it took to get the puck back for us. But what has impressed me this weekend is everybody is buying into the systems, buying into what we want to achieve on the ice.
"Players are really stepping up and fitting into the game plans. This weekend has seen a real team effort, strength throughout the team. Those two games next weekend against Bracknell are huge for us; they could create a gap between us and the teams at the bottom of the league”.