Flames v Devils. Pic: John Uwins.

Devils Win, Giants Crash On Night Of Elite Drama

Cardiff Devils are at the heart of an Elite League title race which is becoming one of the most exciting I can remember.

Captain Jake Morissette and his Devils team clawed out a 3-2 win against Guildford Flames last night, while leaders Belfast Giants suffered a home defeat by the same scoreline against Dundee Stars.

Devils took command against Flames by scoring three unanswered second period goals and held on for a crucial victory.

Cardiff are now one point behind Giants with two games in hand. The title race is hotting up – and there are going to be plenty more twists and turns between now and March.

Flames led after 20 minutes at The Spectrum thanks to Calle Ackered’s powerplay goal (4-03), while Joey Martin was off the ice for hooking. 

Devils turned things around in dramatic style thanks to Stephen Dixon (23-23), Evan Mosey (31-51) and Mark Richardson (34-12).

TJ Foster pulled a goal back in the third and Flames threw themselves forward, but there was no way past Ben Bowns in goal for Devils.

Devils play the Flames again on New Year’s Day, this time in Cardiff Bay at The Viola Arena (4pm). 

Match stats

Scorers, Devils: Stephen Dixon 1+0, Evan Mosey 1+0, Mark Richardson 1+0, Gleason Fournier 0+1, Mike Hedden 0+1, Mark Louis 0+1, Layne Ulmer 0+1, Matt Pope 0+1, Sean Bentivoglio 0+1.

Flames: Calle Ackered 1+1, TJ Foster 1+0, Evan Janssen 0+1, Kruise Reddick 0+1, John Dunbar 0+1.

Period scores (Flames first) 1-0; 0-3 (1-3); 1-0 (2-3).

Shots on goal: Flames (on Bowns) 13+13+14=40; Devils (on Carrozzi) 9+14+10=33.

Penalties in minutes: Flames 2+0+2=4; Devils 2+2+4=8.

Special teams: Flames PK 1/1, PP 1/3; Devils 2/3. PP 0/1.

Stars of the game: Flames, Joshua Waller; Devils, Stephen Dixon.

Referees: Stefan Hogarth and Matt Thompson.

Attendance: 2,025.

Devils’ Josh Batch in action against Flames. Pic: John Uwins.

Belfast Giants 2, Dundee Stars 3

Dundee Stars ended Belfast’s three home game unbeaten streak with a win by the odd goal in five.

Stars earned their win the hard way by coming from behind. Dustin Johner scored Belfast’s first after three minutes and Darcy Murphy doubled the hosts’ lead around five minutes later.

Stars, though, were level before the period was over. Charles Corcoran (12:34) and Brian Hart (12-56).

The game winner came with eight minutes 14 seconds left.

Giants hit the bar inside the final minute as they pushed for an equaliser, but Stars held on to win.

Fixtures – the final pair of games in 2018 take place this evening in the Elite Ice Hockey League.

Glasgow Clan v Fife Flyers 2pm

Already a sell-out. Clan were unlucky to lose in Belfast at the weekend and have won three of their last five on home ice. 

“We look solid, we’re fast in transition and are creating good chances,” said Clan head coach. 

Todd Dutiaume, Fife’s coach, says: “If we come out and play with an edge and guys skating, I like our chances. 

“If we come out going through the motions in this league you get punished, but the way we played over Christmas was a lot better and is something we have to build on.”

Nottingham Panthers v Coventry Blaze 4pm

Tonight’s game at the Motorpoint Arena looks certain to be a sell-out with the Panthers hoping to bounce back against a Coventry team they lost to a couple of nights ago.

Elite League fixtures

Monday 31

Glasgow Clan v Fife Flyers (2pm)

Nottingham Panthers v Coventry Blaze (4pm)


Tuesday 1

Cardiff Devils v Guildford Flames (4pm)

Manchester Storm v Sheffield Steelers (5.30pm)

Wednesday 2

Fife Flyers v Milton Keynes Lightning (6pm)

Dundee Stars v Glasgow Clan (7.30pm)

Nottingham Panthers v Guildford Flames (7.30pm)

Thursday 3

Dundee Stars v Milton Keynes Lightning (7.30pm)

Saturday 5

Belfast Giants v Sheffield Steelers (7pm)

Cardiff Devils v Manchester Storm (7pm)

Glasgow Clan v Dundee Stars (7pm)

Milton Keynes Lightning v Coventry Blaze (7pm)

Nottingham Panthers v Fife Flyers (7pm)

Sunday 6

Belfast Giants v Sheffield Steelers (4pm)

Coventry Blaze v Glasgow Clan (5.15pm)

Manchester Storm v Nottingham Panthers (5.30pm)

Guildford Flames v Milton Keynes Lightning (6pm)

Fife Flyers v Cardiff Devils (6.30pm)


Belfast Giants 33 24 8 1 49 .742 125 74 458 0-1
Cardiff Devils 31 22 5 4 48 .774 125 81 372 2-0
Nottingham Panthers 35 18 10 7 43 .614 113 105 578 0-3
Fife Flyers 30 16 10 4 36 .600 104 96 411 1-0
Sheffield Steelers 32 17 15 0 34 .531 100 106 447 3-0
Guildford Flames 31 16 14 1 33 .532 102 94 418 0-1
Dundee Stars 33 12 13 8 32 .485 87 110 353 1-0
Glasgow Clan 29 15 13 1 31 .534 94 100 363 0-2
Coventry Blaze 30 12 12 6 30 .500 97 113 381 1-0
Manchester Storm 32 12 17 3 27 .422 89 118 800 0-1
Milton Keynes Lightning 32 10 20 2 22 .344 76 115 610 0-3

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