Sheffield Steelers comfortably took Fife Flyers’ scalp this evening as they chalked up a four-point weekend.
The trip to Scotland had been a punishing one after the one-goal win over local rivals Nottingham at Sheffield Arena the night before.
But some good work from Frank Doyle , Sheffield’s on-form netminder, kept Steelers on even terms in the first period.
However points-grabber Mathieu Roy added to his formidable tally with a go-ahead goal for Sheffield at the half way point.
Roy added a second, after Scott Fleming had equalised in a feisty middle period.
Flyers could do nothing with Roy and he chalked up his hat-trick at 42;26.
It was left to Tyler Mosienko to deliver the crushing empty-netter goal in the dying seconds.
SATURDAY NIGHT REPORT
Sheffield Steelers 3-2 Nottingham Panthers (final)
Concussion victim Danny Bois failed a fitness test but Steelers won and went back to the top of the table last night.
The new Sheffield winger signing was pencilled in to make his home debut against Nottingham Panthers.
He trained during the week, but started to feel unwell when his heart-rate increased.
It is a major blow for the Canadian winger, who has been “going mad” to play.
But it was an even bigger one for Sheffield, who brought in Bois after losing another concussion victim Pascal Morency and are looking to go on a winning run after losing twice last weekend.
Steelers’ playing their 100th Arena home game against Nottingham Panthers did have Tyler Mosienko in the line-up - he’d had an injury too.
The game was 15 minutes late starting due to traffic issues.
But it was worth the wait in a nerve-tingling, super-close first period.
Both defences were on top until 18;36 when Michael Forney got the best chance of the period and rifled it home.
The other big talking point was a contentious 2+10 penalty for checking to the head, handed to Rob Dowd.
The Sheffield player used his shoulder to ward off an approaching opponent - it looked a harsh call to me.
Colton Fretter got the second session off to a fine start with an easy tap-in for 2-0.
But Panthers cashed in on a sloppy Steelers play in the home defensive zone and Robert Farmer got one back.
Nottingham’s Max Parent levelled before a superb effort from Dowd stole the shot.
Fretter seemed certain to get an empty-netter at the death, but his shot hit the post.
It didn’t matter - Steelers were back at the top of the league, holding the position jointly on points with Braehead Clan.
*Chris Frank’s third-period goal saw Braehead beat Fife 2-1.
Leigh Salters’ ninth goal of the season put the Clan ahead 15:43 into the middle frame but Chris Auger’s powerplay marker levelled things early in third before Frank decided matters.
Braehead Clan 2 Fife Flyers 1
Cardiff Devils 4 Belfast Giants 1
Dundee Stars 2 Edinburgh Capitals 3
Hull Stingrays 5 Coventry Blaze 3
Sheffield Steelers 3 Nottingham Panthers 2
Sunday 7th December
Braehead Clan v Hull Stingrays – 6.00pm
Cardiff Devils v Belfast Giants 6.00pm
Coventry Blaze v Nottingham Panthers 5.15pm
Edinburgh Capitals v Dundee Stars 6.00pm
Fife Flyers v Sheffield Steelers 6.30pm.
*The draw for the semi-finals of the Challenge Cup has been made:
Fife Flyers or Nottingham Panthers v Sheffield Steelers or Dundee Stars (this game will determine the home team in the final.)
Cardiff Devils or Belfast Giants v Braehead Clan or Hull Stingrays/Coventry Blaze (this game will determine the away team in the final.)
The final will take place at the Sheffield Arena on Sunday 8th March 2015 at 4pm