Elite League: Belfast Giants 2-1 Nottingham Panthers

Evan Cheverie celebrates after scoring the winner against Nottingham Panthers
Evan Cheverie celebrates after scoring the winner against Nottingham Panthers

Belfast Giants bounced back from Saturday's defeat by Sheffield with a 2-1 win over Nottingham Panthers.

Belfast were short-handed when Robby Sandrock smashed the puck in with a powerful finish after five minutes at the Odyssey Arena.

The Panthers levelled at the end of the first period with Bryan Schmidt netting from close range.

The winner in this tight contest came from Evan Cheverie in the sixth minute of the final period.

It was an impressive response from the Giants after losing 4-2 to the Steelers and they took took the initiative early in the contest.

Kevin Westgarth had already deflected a Jeff Mason shot onto the post, the best of several early chances, when the Stanley Cup winner was penalised for hooking.

Short-handed, the Giants rocked the Panthers with a superb opening goal as Cheverie played in Sandrock to net.

Nottingham's Greg Jacina is denied by Giants netminder Carsen Chubak
Nottingham's Greg Jacina is denied by Giants netminder Carsen Chubak at the Odyssey

The Giants dominated the next 10 minutes and the home crowd gave former Belfast player Chris Higgins a frosty welcome back.

The Panthers restored parity in the 19th minute when netminder Carsen Chubak parried a shot to Schmidt, who supplied the finish.

Neither side could add to their tally in the second period - the Panthers went close with Chris Lawrence rattling the frame of Chubak's goal.

Ray Sawada missed a golden opportunity to hand the hosts the initiative when he failed to convert a penalty shot in the 37th minute of the contest.

Cheverie popped up with the winner although Belfast were grateful to Chubak for several fine saves in the final three minutes as the Panthers sought a second equaliser, ultimately in vain.

The crowd of 4,585 was Belfast largest ever attendance for a Sunday afternoon game.

Top Stories