The Stena Line Belfast Giants made it two wins in two nights over the Coventry Blaze with a 7-2 victory on Saturday in Belfast.
A Darcy Murphy hat-trick and a fine performance in goal by Chris Truehl saw the Giants move one point behind the first placed Cardiff Devils.
The Giants will complete the weekends’ action with a Sunday clash on the road against the Guildford Flames.
First Period Stalemate
Both sides had powerplay opportunities during the opening 20 minutes of play however Jackson Whistle and Kevin Nastiuk kept the door closed and the first period ended scoreless.
Murphy Stars With Second Period Hat-Trick
Just as in the previous night’s game, this Elite League encounter came to life during the second period.
Darcy Murphy opened the scoring at 24:51 with a powerplay goal assisted by David Rutherford. The Giants stretched their lead 11 seconds later when Brandon Benedict struck for the second time in as many nights, assisted by Steve Saviano and Jonathan Ferland.
Adam Courchaine got the Blaze to within one at 28:39 with a powerplay goal, assisted by Marc-Olivier Vallerand and Jordan Pietrus.
Darcy Murphy scored his second special teams goal of the period with an unassisted short handed effort at 37:23.
Alex Barron pulled the visitors back again with a powerplay strike at 38:31, assisted by Gaelan Patterson and Ben Lake.
Darcy Murphy grabbed his hat-trick at 49:20, assisted by Spiro Goulakos as the Giants took a 4-2 lead into the final period.
Giants Take Control In Final Period
Colin Shields gave the hosts a three goal cushion at 47:13 with a powerplay goal, assisted by Jonathan Ferland and Brendan Connolly.
Spiro Goulakos added the Giants sixth goal of the night and second powerplay goal of the final period at 48:42, assisted by Darcy Murphy and Brendan Connolly.
Jim Vandermeer ended the scoring on Saturday with a strike at 58:58, assisted by Sebastien Sylvestre.
Stena Line Belfast Giants 7-2 Coventry Blaze
Giants Man of the Match:
#15 Darcy Murphy
The Giants are next in action at again on Sunday, their third game in as many nights, with an away clash against the Guildford Flames, face-off 6pm.
Belfast return to home action on Friday 2nd and Saturday 3rd February with a double header against the league leading Cardiff Devils – both games face-off 7pm at The SSE Arena.
Tickets are now on sale online at ticketmaster.ie as well as from the Arena Box Office either in person or by calling (028) 9073 9074.
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