Ice Hockey: Braehead Clan and Fife Flyers secure four points

Braehead Clan took victory in overtime against Sheffield Steelers on Saturday to clinch a four-point weekend
Braehead Clan took victory in overtime against Sheffield Steelers on Saturday to clinch a four-point weekend

Braehead Clan head coach Ryan Finnerty hailed the competitiveness of his team as they churned out a four-point weekend.

It's been a season of ups and downs for the Glasgow side, but the manner of their victories over Manchester Storm on Friday and Sheffield Steelers on Saturday was pleasing.

And the Clan boss was especially satisfied to do it with a team short of four key players, but one with great collective spirit.

"We're short and a little banged up, but the guys had a common goal to get the points and we did that," Finnerty said.

"We competed from the back and scraped two wins against two high-octane offensive teams. Our defensive zone is probably the best it's been all season.

"Our game plan was executed in the way we wanted. It was a good weekend overall and I'm proud of my guys."

The mood around the club was completely different to seven days previously when they were beaten by Edinburgh Capitals and Storm.

But they bounced back in impressive fashion, starting on Friday at home when Manchester, playing three games in Scotland this weekend, began that mini run in Glasgow.

However, Finnerty's men ended up 2-1 winners, with goals from Mike Hammond and Scott Pitt, despite a consolation from Eric Neilson.

Clan headed to Sheffield on Saturday and after goalie Michal Zajkowski denied Guillaume Desbiens' penalty shot, they went two up through Hammond and Pitt.

Steelers pulled level through Colton Fretter and Andreas Valdix, but Matt Beca's overtime winner clinched both points as Braehead took a 3-2 win away from Yorkshire, completing the points haul.

Fife Flyers flying

Manchester left that disappointment behind to head to Fife Flyers on Saturday and although they took a point, they were on the losing side again in a fiery 4-3 overtime defeat.

Brendan Brooks and Chase Schaber put Flyers two up, but were pegged back by Jack Prince.

The game soon turned sour when Neilson was ejected from the game for an alleged altercation with a fan in the stands.

Storm had to refocus and Cody Cartier levelled the game up after two periods. Sebastien Thinel and Darian Dzuirzynski traded goals, but Ric Jackman took it in overtime for the home side.

Flyers headed to Nottingham Panthers on Sunday and were the first visitors to the Panthers' lair after Corey Neilson's side were crowned European Continental Cup champions last week.

And the Fifers spoiled the party, taking a 3-2 win after penalty shots to make it a four-point weekend for Todd Dutiaume's side also.

Justin Fox's goal cancelled out Brian McGrattan's earlier strike before Alex Nikiforuk restored Nottingham's lead. Brendan Brooks got the equaliser and the game went beyond regulation time.

While Shane Owen performed some heroics in goal, Fox's penalty shot was the one that proved decisive, confirming a hard-fought Flyers victory.

Manchester, completed their three-game stint north of the border, finished off at Edinburgh Capitals on Sunday and once more, ended up commiserating as they went down 2-1 to the Caps.

Mason Wilgosh and Mike D'Orazio struck for the home side to bookend the second period, but was pegged back by Manchester's Matt Bissonnette early in the third, but it was all they could muster.

A weekend to forget for Dundee Stars

It was a big win for the Capitals, who reduced the gap at the bottom of the league to three points behind Dundee Stars, who had a horror show of a weekend.

They were blanked 6-0 by Belfast Giants on Saturday as Mike Forney and Steve Saviano had them two up after the first 20 minutes.

James Desmarais, Chris Higgins and Jonathan Boxill made it comfortable before Desmarais added his second to complete the rout.

The misery continued at home on Sunday when they blanked again in a game that was arguably their biggest of the season - a 4-0 drubbing at the hands of Coventry Blaze.

Blaze are just above them in the play-off spots, but Marc LeFebvre's men just couldn't get near them as TJ Syner, Liam Stewart, Barry Almeida and Robin Bergman all struck to clinch victory.

Weekend results

Friday

Braehead Clan 2-1 Manchester Storm

Saturday

Belfast Giants 6-0 Dundee Stars

Fife Flyers 4-3 (OT) Manchester Storm

Sheffield Steelers 2-3 (OT) Braehead Clan

Sunday

Dundee Stars 0-4 Coventry Blaze

Edinburgh Capitals 2-1 Manchester Storm

Nottingham Panthers 2-3 (PS) Fife Flyers

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