The Stena Line Belfast Giants lost for the first time in the Elite League on Sunday night, 3-2 against the Sheffield Steelers in Ice Sheffield. The Giants dominated the game in large spells, outshooting the home side 51-34 but found Steelers netminder Frank Doyle tough to break down.
The game got off to a fast start, with the Giants taking the lead with only 2:21 through Captain Adam Keefe – assisted by Evan Cheverie and Darryl Lloyd – however their lead did not last long with Jason Hewitt finishing high and past Stephen Murphy at the back post with 5:17 gone. Despite the visitors turning up the heat on Frank Doyle, the Sheffield netminder – it was the Steelers who took the lead for the first time in the game at 11:27 with Cullen Eddy taking full advantage of an Interference call on Colin Shields by Referee Tom Darnell.
The second period, like the first, hit the ground running and it was the Giants who deservedly tied things up, with Robby Sandrock showing composure to fire through the five-hole of Doyle at 24:44 – assisted by Darryl Lloyd and Mike Kompon. Come the end of 40 minutes it was the away team who were on top with the Giants outshooting the Steelers 31-25.
The final period saw the Giants dominate, however against the run of play, it was the hosts who re-gained the lead, through Colton Fretter at 43:52 and left Belfast with it all to do again. After their goal, the Steelers defended well in numbers and provided tough to breakdown along with their star netminder Frank Doyle. In the last minute, Evan Cheverie saw his shot cannon off the post while on the powerplay and trickle agonisingly wide to prevent the Giants from taking at least a deserved point from this Elite League encounter.
Sheffield Steelers 2-3 Stena Line Belfast Giants
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