Cardiff Devils defeat Dundee Stars 3-2 after a shootout

By Craig AndersonBBC Scotland
Edinburgh Capitals lost at home to Cardiff

Former Dundee Stars goalie Chris Whitley broke his former team's hearts as his penalty shot save clinched a win for his new club Cardiff Devils.

Whitley, who spent last season with the Tayside men, denied former colleague Jeff Hutchins in the shootout as Dundee left the Welsh capital with a point.

But it left them winless as this latest setback followed on from a disastrous 8-2 loss to Edinburgh Capitals on Saturday night.

The fact they were beaten purely by the lottery of penalty shots may serve as some comfort, but they still sit in the bottom two places, which would deny them a play-off place.

With games running out though, Dundee have eight matches against Gardiner Conference sides in their remaining 12 regular season matches which may help them in their push.

They fell behind inside the first ten minutes when Max Birbraer glided up the inside left and smashed the puck past Stars goalie Nic Riopel to give Cardiff the lead.

Dundee hit back as forward Janis Ozolins fired one at Whitley, but AJ MacLean followed in to finish the rebound and the Stars found themselves level.

Devils, however didn't let it rest there and Birbraer unleashed a one-timer from Stuart MacRae's short pass, leaving Riopel helpless as they ended the first period 2-1 up.

The match could have gone either way and, while Cardiff enjoyed the lion's share of chances, they couldn't find their way past an impressive Riopel.

In fact, Dundee could have found the net twice, but Matt Baxter and Pat Bowen were both denied by the post as they scrambled for another equaliser.

Some good play between Mike Wirll and Sami Ryhanen up the left saw the former strike one across Whitley and into the net as the Stars pulled it back to two apiece.

However, Bowen missed the final ten minutes or so after picking up a two plus ten minute penalty for checking from behind, leaving Dundee a defenceman down in the final spell.

The Stars held on and the score remained at 2-2 following the third period and overtime, despite Birbraer and Mark Richardson going close for Cardiff.

After Richardson had netted his penalty shot, up stepped Hutchins, but he could only fire the puck at Whitley, with the Devils goalie clinching two points for his team.

Stars coach Hutchins took the defeat on the chin and looked at the positives, especially after Saturday's horror show.

He said: "If you had offered me a point before we came all the way down here, I would have taken it. More importantly, it was about rebounding from Saturday's loss in Edinburgh.

"We showed good character to come back twice and we hit the post twice, who would have put us in front so there are definitely positives to take from this game.

"We have four tough games coming up against teams in the top half and we have to look at nicking points here and there to keep us in the play-off running."

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