FIFE FLYERS 2 TRADE-MART DUNDEE STARS 4
The Trade-Mart Dundee Stars made it back-to-back wins as they claimed the latest set of bragging rights in the Tayside Derby with a 4-2 victory in Kirkcaldy over Fife Flyers, on Boxing Day.
By Kris Smith
The Stars had defenseman, Chris McKay back in the line-up for their trip to Kirkcaldy but had to play without the injured Kris Inglis and Jake Elmer, but also new signing, Elijah Vilio who is yet to arrive.
Meanwhile, the Flyers gave Andrew Little his first start between the pipes as he covered for the injured Shane Owen and 16-year-old, Cameron Kenny was brought in to back up Little.
From the opening face-off, Dundee piled on the pressure early and looked to create some cracks in Little and the short-benched Flyers but nothing would come through the first 10 minutes.
Despite the heavy pressure from the Stars, the Flyers had still created a few breaks of their own and forced Kevin Carr into some crucial stops, however he was unable to deny Kyle Osterberg from scoring the opener on 12 minutes.
The home side made a quick move down the left wing, where Osterberg deked his way through the Dundee defences before firing the puck through the legs of Carr.
Marc LeFebvre demanded a response from his players and they set about finding an equaliser but continued to see their shots blocked and saved by Little and his defenders for the rest of the first period.
Although, the second session would be a different story as Carter Johnson broke straight through and levelled for Dundee after only 81 seconds of play, as the Canadian went through on goal and then pulled Little one way and sent the puck the other.
The Stars then took the lead eight minutes later as Spencer Naas fed Ryan Valentini in behind but he would slow up and look for a pass before electing to shoot himself and rung his effort in off the underside of the crossbar, to make it 2-1.
Fife would then be given a chance to equalise as they had a five minute powerplay after Sean Allen was ejected from the game for a check from behind on Flyers’ Osterberg.
Even with the prolonged man advantage, Fife could not worry the Stars too much and they continued to trail heading into the third period, which would be a battle for the crucial next goal and it would be a battle the visitors won.
Anthony Rinaldi was next to add his name to the scoresheet as he stunned the crowd with a goal straight from the face-off in the 47th minute and it came from Johnson winning the draw and sending the puck back to the Canadian for a straight shot past Little.
Tom Coolen’s men hit back two minutes later to make it a 3-2 game as Max Humitz snuck his effort past Carr at his near post and that put the pressure back on, however a hooking call against former Star, Johan Eriksson put Dundee on their first and only powerplay of the night.
Inside the final seconds of their man advantage, the Stars capitalised to restore their two-goal cushion as Beaudoin turned from creator to scorer, blasting a long-range slapshot past the Scottish keeper.
Fife then pulled Little out of the goal for an extra attacker inside the final two minutes but failed to make any of their offensive zone pressure count and that condemned them to a 4-2 home defeat.
The two teams now meet again in Dundee on Wednesday and will go at it once again with the Stars going in search of two more points to lift them into fifth and the Flyers needing the points to get them off the foot of the Elite League table.
Man of the Match
Dundee: #17 Anthony Rinaldi
Fife: #1 Andrew Little
1-0 Kyle Osterberg (Aleksi Makela) 12:20
1-1 Carter Johnson (Anthony Rinaldi) 21:21
1-2 Ryan Valentini (Spencer Naas, Chris McKay) 29:38
1-3 Anthony Rinaldi (Carter Johnson) 46:47
2-3 Max Humitz (Casey Gilling, Teemu Pulkkinen) 49:01
2-4 Brent Beaudoin (Josh Brittain, Kyle Pouncy) 53:03 PPG
All images: Flyers Images.