Gerad Adams’ re-building of Sheffield Steelers looks set to continue, despite last night’s big win.
An overwhelming 7-2 defeat at Nottingham on Saturday led to the coach questioning his team’s commitment.
“There will be consequences, for the lack of heart in our team” he said darkly.
Adams accused his side of “giving up” - the implication being that some members of his squad don’t have the character for big games.
A win over Fife - who are nobody’s favourite for the title and no real rival in the fans’ eyes - is one thing.
Losing to Nottingham, or Belfast or Braehead, who are in Sheffield next weekend is another.
“We made them look good by losing heart,” Adams added, saying a mix of individual mistakes and “incredible softness” had eaten into the team’s resolve at the NIC.
Adams admitted the problems had not manifested themselves simply in game time. “Training wasn’t what it could be, the standard wasn’t there” he said.
Personally, I’d like see two new players coming in. One to replace injured Pascal Morency. And one to replace an existing forward.
Last night, Steelers worked hard to overcome and tame stubborn Flyers. It began badly, though. Sheffield couldn’t manage a shot on goal on a Power Play and then left a huge gap down their left flank, exploited by Jordan Fulton with a low shot across Frank Doyle.
A minute later, it was 1-1, Mathieu Roy tipping in. Roy turned provider to set up a lightning finish for Mike Forney at 8;22.
Steelers had a goal washed out at the start of the second and Regan made four first class stops including a cracking glove catch from Tyler Mosienko. When Steelers’ third goal arrived it was hotly contested: Mosienko’s strike looked to them like it hadn’t crossed the line. But Fife could have no argument over the fourth scored again by Mosienko and a fifth almost walked in by Colton Fretter.
Eventually the dam broke again, with Forney getting number six,
* Panthers ran riot against a strangely-bland Steelers side on Saturday. Two goals inside the first four minutes from David Clarke and Cody Wild put Panthers in charge.
Sheffield rallied with a 1-1 middle session, Mosienko and Bruce Graham cancelling each other out.
O’Connor scored his first goal for Steelers 37 seconds inside the last period.
The stage seemed set for a comeback. Nothing was further from the truth.
Sheffield’s top line was neutralised and Graham got his second.
There followed a collapse of epic proportions with three goals in six minutes, through Robert Lachowicz and two from Chris Lawrence - his final short-handed. Steelers fans among the 6,899 trooped home knowing it will take a while to erase this experience from the mind.
The re-building is far from over.
Sunday 9th November 2014
Cardiff Devils 3 Belfast Giants 2
Coventry Blaze 3 Braehead Clan 4
Dundee Stars 3 Hull Stingrays 4
Edinburgh Capitals 5 Nottingham Panthers 3
Sheffield Steelers 6 Fife Flyers 1