Elite League: Giants blow four-goal lead but beat Storm in shootout

Curtis Hamilton
The Giants and Storm have played each other four times this season, with the game going to overtime on three of those occasions

The Belfast Giants threw away a four-goal lead against Manchester Storm but held on to win 6-5 after a shootout.

Curtis Hamilton scored a hat-trick and efforts from Bobby Farnham and Ben Lake helped the Giants race into a 5-1 lead.

Kyle Hope scored Storm's first goal before Layne Ulmer, Tyson Fawcett, Cameron Critchlow and Scott Simmonds levelled the game in a remarkable comeback.

However, Shane Owen saved two penalties as the Giants won 3-1 in the shootout.

Hamilton got the visitors off to the best possible start by scoring five minutes after face-off, but Storm swiftly hit back through Hope's goal.

Farnham and Lake scored twice within a minute to give the Giants a comfortable buffer at the end of the first period.

The in-form Hamilton grabbed his second two minutes after the restart before netting his hat-trick goal three minutes later.

Storm responded before the second intermission with two power-play goals by Ulmer and Fawcett, when Lewis Hook and Mark Garside were sent to the penalty box.

The deficit was further reduced when Critchlow scored unassisted before Simmonds completed the comeback with 2:21 to go.

The sides couldn't be separated in overtime, with Lake, Hamilton and Jordan Smotherman all scoring in the shootout. Ciaran Long recorded the sole miss for the visitors.

Mario Puskarich netted for Manchester but Owen saved from Fawcett and Hope with Jared Aulin missing the target.

After a frustrating start to the season in front of the net, Adam Keefe's side have now scored 12 goals this weekend after a 7-2 win over Dundee Stars on Friday.

The Giants move up to fifth place in the Elite League with the shootout win, separated from Cardiff Devils in second place only on games won.

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