Challenge Cup Final: Cardiff Devils 3-6 Belfast Giants
Belfast Giants beat reigning champions Cardiff Devils to win the Challenge Cup at the Ice Arena Wales.
Giants trailed in the first and second periods but powered back to dominate once they had levelled.
Brandon Benedict, David Rutherford, Jonathan Ferland, Matt Towe and Darcy Murphy were all on the scoresheet.
Devils had led through a Layne Ulmer goal and went 2-1 in front through a Gleason Fournier strike but could not maintain their fast start.
The Giants punished Devils for their failure to capitalise on a dominant first period display, where they only took a 1-0 advantage.
Cardiff led when Ulmer scored with the only goal of the opening period, but the hosts were unlucky to only have a one-goal lead to show for a strong 20 minutes on the ice.
The Giants duly levelled through Benedict, although Fournier restored Cardiff's advantage before the visitors seized control.
Steve Saviano, and Towe combined to feed Rutherford who levelled and a vastly-improved second period performance from Giants culminated in a Ferland goal that put them ahead for the first time.
It capped a strong period for Belfast and riled Devils with several scuffles breaking out as the teams headed back to the dressing rooms.
Devils overturned a four-goal first leg deficit against Sheffield Steelers in the semi-final in a thriller in Cardiff, but they could not repeat those heroics against Belfast.
Giants, who knocked out perennial Challenge Cup contenders Nottingham Panthers in the last four, were not to be denied and gave themselves a cushion when Towe fired home in the third period.
Murphy then made it 5-2 to all but cap the victory, though the never quit attitude of the hosts allowed Jake Morissette to score a consolation before Ferland added his second and Giants' sixth into an empty net as Devils forlornly chased a miracle comeback.