The Belfast Giants beat Cardiff Devils 4-3 after overtime in the first of back-to-back Elite League games between the sides at the SSE Arena.
Jake Morisette put Cardiff ahead in the first period but Brandon Benedict replied for the hosts.
Joey Martin and Brent Walton twice restored the Devils' lead but Colin Shields and Michael Forney were on target for the Giants.
James Desmarais found the net in the first period of overtime.
The sides will meet again at the same venue on Saturday night.