Belfast Giants battle to 6-3 Elite League win over Cardiff Devils
Belfast Giants moved within three points of Elite League leaders Braehead as they beat Cardiff Devils 6-3 at the Odyssey Arena on Friday night.
Craig Peacock scored twice with the other Giants goals coming from Mike Kompon, Kevin Westgarth, Darryl Lloyd and Ray Sawada.
Doug Clarkson, Jake Morissette and Chris Culligan replied for the Devils.
The Giants are now third in the standings and will travel to face the Clan on Saturday night.
The Giants iced without two of their top defencemen - Cody Brookwell was serving a one-game suspension after an incident during the clash with Nottingham last Sunday and Calvin Elfring was ill so coach Steve Thornton moved Evan Cheverie back to the blueline to help out.
The Giants responded by taking the game to the Devils in the first period and they took the lead after only sixty seconds.
Sawada's shot took a deflection, the puck bounced off the post and Kompon was there to knock in the rebound.
The home side doubled their advantage at 18:31 on the powerplay. Robby Sandrock's shot from the blueline hit a Devils skate and Westgarth, in one motion, turned and fired in the second goal on the backhand.
Peacock netted his first of the game just over a minute into the second period before Clarkson replied on the powerplay but Peacock was on target again at 28:12 to make it 4-1.
Morissette closed the gap again with a little over 10 minutes to go in the game before Lloyd skated the length of the ice to grab his 17th goal of the season.
The 6,084 crowd then got to see Westgarth drop the gloves and knock over three Devils before being ejected from the game and receiving a standing ovation.
The visitors once again made it a two-goal game when Culligan scored at 55:50 but Sawada's empty netter sealed an important two points in the title race.