VIDEO: Sheffield Steelers 5-6 Guildford Flames (final score)

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Sheffield Steelers went 3-0 behind in a mistake-ridden first period tonight, mounted a dramatic fightback, but ultimately fell short.

They were behind from the third minute and despite a tide of attacks could never get on level terms.

Guildford Flames take the game to Steelers, in the first period. Pic by Hayley Roberts

Guildford Flames take the game to Steelers, in the first period. Pic by Hayley Roberts

Steelers had started the match without Justin Buzzeo, who had been allowed permission to attend a wedding in Canada - a clause written into his initial contract.

Import forward Anthony DeLuca made his debut on the third line.

Sheffield were behind at 3;26 Brett Ferguson firing under goalie Jackson Whistle.

Tanner Eberle hit the post but Sheffield could have conceded again, when Kruise Reddick sprung out the penalty box and advanced on Whistle, firing over the bar.

Steelers v Flames

Steelers v Flames

Sheffield lost possession in their own half and went 0-2 down, as Ferguson found the net again.

It could have been worse as Erik Lindhagen seemed to hit the post as he drove the net.

It was 0-3 though when Evan Janssen was given the freedom of Sheffield Arena to score.

The fightback was an impressive one, though. And it came with two powerplay goals.

Aaron Johnson, who had been hurt during a penalty kill, still managed to get up the ice to pass to Evan McGrath, who rifled home.

Stefan Della Rovere back-handed a second, again with an assist from Johnson, with 22 seconds left of a highly-entertaining first period.

Arena fans were delighted - but their optimism took a blow when Ian Watters firing top-shelf past Whistle's left hand.

And it was 2-5 when McGrath's line couldn't stop a nice flowing move, finished off by Reddick.

Robert Dowd then drew a hooking call from Reddick and flashed home a goal from centre blue line in the power play at 30;18.

And Eberle pulled another back at 37;24; a goal which survived a video review.

But the gap was two goals again, when Watters added to his tally.

If Guildford were going to achieve their first ever win in the EIHL at Sheffield, they were going to have to work for it.

Dowd got a piece of Davey Phillips right flank drive and suddenly it was 5-6.

Whistle, now totally composed after being hooked for a shift in the previous period, made three excellent stops, two of them on breakaways.

Eberle continued to cause Flames issues by darting skates into their defensive zone.

And even with a few minutes on the clock you wouldn't bet against Sheffield equalising.