Dundee & Omar Pacha end Sheffield hoodoos, mixed results for Glasgow & Fife
Dundee Stars coach Omar Pacha says a week of rest and rejuvenation played its part as they buried their Sheffield Steelers hoodoo.
Stars defeated them both away and home over the weekend to not only end a 13-game winless run but also end a six-year wait for win in Yorkshire.
Glasgow Clan bounced back with an 8-3 trouncing of Elite League bottom side Milton Keynes Lightning after Saturday's loss to Cardiff Devils.
And it was another weekend of frustration for Fife Flyers in two high-scoring games where they won one and lost one.
Stars finally get win away to Steelers
Dundee's first ever Elite League win in Sheffield also ended Pacha's 30-game sequence without a win as a coach against the Steelers.
After a year at Hull Stingrays from 2014, followed by two at Manchester Storm and now a year-and-a-half with Dundee, Pacha finally tasted victory over Sheffield and said: "It was a great feeling.
"We had a whole week of practice and we wanted to change a few things. Some of the injuries we had were healed too.
"Last week, we looked mangled and tired and the days off seemed to rejuvenate the group and it was kind of a wake-up call too.
"It translated into the weekend and I'm proud of the guys for what they put into the two games.
"It was a great two games and I couldn't be happier for the guys. The big positive is we never got away from our game and now we have to build on it."
Saturday's visit to Yorkshire had its tricky moments but Dundee managed to pull through, winning 6-3.
Fabrizio Ricci and Drydn Dow gave them an early lead, but they were pegged back as Mark Matheson netted for Steelers. Ricci's second gave Stars a 3-1 lead after the first.
Steelers tied the game at three through powerplay goals from John Armstrong and Ryan Martinelli.
But Dundee kicked on with Matt Marquardt and Francois Bouchard netting before Ricci completed his hat-trick.
Both teams made the trip to Dundee for the rematch and if Steelers were looking to exact revenge, it never came as Tom Barrasso's men simply did not turn up in a 6-1 loss.
Pacha's men were clinical as goals from Brian Hart and Matt Bissonnette and two from Marquardt put them in a commanding position.
Josh Pitt delivered a consolation goal as Stars stretched their lead to five courtesy of Bissonnette and Charles Corcoran to seal an excellent four-point win.
Contrasting results for Clan and Fife
Glasgow Clan had a home double-header against the league's top and bottom teams - Cardiff Devils and Milton Keynes Lightning.
Saturday against leaders Cardiff was a good performance but ultimately disappointing as the champions took a 4-2 win away from Glasgow, with Matt Haywood netting a double.
He did the same on Sunday as part of Clan's 8-3 drubbing of MK, with Matt Beca picking up a hat-trick, keeping Pete Russell's side in fifth.
Fife Flyers had visited Milton Keynes on Saturday and needed overtime to overcome them in a 6-5 thriller, with Joe Basaraba picking up the vital winner.
They went on to Manchester to take on Storm on Sunday and were on the wrong end of a 7-4 result that leaves them just two points ahead of Glasgow in the standings.
Chase Schaber, Mike Cazzola, Danick Gauthier and Paul Crowder all found the net, but it would have left the Flyers coaching staff feeling somewhat frustrated.
Stats of the week
- Dundee Stars got their first wins over Sheffield Steelers since November 2016.
- Glasgow Clan's Haywood scored four goals over the weekend, doubling his tally for the season so far.
Tweet of the week
Dundee coach Pacha took to social media after Saturday's win at Steelers with a post tinged with relief as well as joy...