Belfast Giants lose to Braehead Clan in overtime at Odyssey

Action from the Giants' defeat by Braehead Clan
Action from the Giants' defeat by Braehead Clan

The Belfast Giants lost 4-3 to Braehead Clan after overtime in their Challenge Cup game at the Odyssey Arena.

Goals from Stefan Meyer and Lee Esders in the first period and Leigh Salters in the second gave the visitors a 3-0 lead, before Colin Shields replied.

Shields and Jeff Mason were on target to level in the third period but Neil Trimm scored on the powerplay in overtime to give Braehead the victory.

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Belfast Giants captain Adam Keefe in action against the Braehead Clan

The Giants beat Edinburgh Capitals 8-2 in Belfast on Friday night.

Trimm's goal 34 seconds into overtime ended an exciting game after a superb comeback from the Giants.

They were only denied a chance to complete it when Evan Cheverie was assessed an interference penalty with 1.6 seconds remaining in regulation which gave the Clan the powerplay opportunity.

The Giants found themselves 0-2 down after just 2:11 of the game as the Clan, unlike the Giants playing their first game of the weekend, dominated the opening stages.

At 1:48 from a simple breakout from their own end it was Meyer who blasted the puck past Giants netminder Stephen Murphy. It took just two passes to go the full length of the Odyssey ice.

Twenty-three seconds later Esders lifted a wrist shot over the shoulder of Murphy to double the Scottish side's advantage.

The home side weathered the early storm, Craig Peacock hit the Clan post and they wasted a couple of powerplay opportunities but heading into the second period there was work to be done.

It looked like the Giants were back in the game when Mike Kompon poked the puck into the net after Adam Keefe's shot bounced up off goalie Kyle Jones but it ruled out for a high stick after it was originally given.

Temperatures rose and the injustice the Giants felt was compounded when Salters scored on the powerplay at 27:55 but the home side did eventually get a goal that counted when Keefe caused mayhem around the Clan net, drew Jones out of position and found Shields who fired home at 36:43 to give the Giants hope going into the final twenty minutes.

With Kompon now missing, the under-strength Giants fought their way back to tie the game with two third period goals.

At 45:32 Shields hammered a one timer past Jones from the blueline as the Giants scored on the powerplay.

It was frantic end-to-end stuff and either side could have scored but with 1:21 to go Jeff Mason threw the puck at the net and Keefe redirected into the net to tie the score.

In the end it was the referee who had a big influence on the outcome as Cheverie was penalised and the Clan took the spoils.

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