TRADE-MART DUNDEE STARS 4 GUILDFORD FLAMES 6
The Trade-Mart Dundee Stars welcomed Guildford Flames to Tayside on Saturday night for a massive battle with both sides in desperate need of points.
By Kris Smith
The Stars kept Welshman, Brython Preece between the pipes after he back-stopped the Stars to a 5-1 win in Nottingham against the Panthers on Wednesday but forward, Ben Brown would drop out of the line-up for two-duties, with the injured Romans Semjonovs also not icing and defender, Chris Lidjsman came back into the fold after missing Wednesday’s win due to illness.
Meanwhile, Paul Dixon handed goaltender, Taz Burman the start in the Flames net after he was victorious on their last visit to the DIA, with Adam Long backing him up and Bradley Lalonde, Logan Fredericks and Eamon McAdam did not ice.
Both teams got off to a good start with lots of dangerous attacking moves and pace to their games but neither goalie would be beaten early and as the period began to wore on, each side started to settle in.
However, the Stars shook things up with a goal from nowhere as Philippe Sanche pick-pocketed the Flames defenseman, winning back possession deep in the Guildford end.
The Canadian could then play a pass back across goal for the arriving Hugo Reinhardt, who buried his shot past Burman on nine minutes.
Dundee then doubled their lead with a shorthanded effort in the 14th minute, with Ben Sokay serving a minor penalty for slashing and again it came from Sanche stealing the puck back in the Flames zone.
Although, this time he decided to head goalwards, where he would see his first effort stopped by the Canadian keeper but Burman was unable to prevent the second shot from flying into the roof of the net.
Jeff Mason’s side had continually looked dangerous on the counter-attack throughout the opening period and they would add another just before the break as Elijiah Barriga got in on the scoring with a powerplay goal.
With just over a minute to play, Dundee had setup in the offensive zone and after a few testing shots for Burman, he was unable to recover quickly enough to keep Barriga from picking out the top tight corner of his goal from the slot.
A 3-0 lead for the Stars after 20 minutes had blown the Flames out but Dixon used the right words to relight their fire in the break and they re-emerged hungry.
It took five minutes for Guildford to get their first breakthrough and it was a long-range effort from Mike Crocock that flew through traffic and past Preece, then just under a minute late Brett Ferguson fired home a second to make it a one-goal game.
Preece had made the initial save but his stop forced the puck skyward, where it came back down to land on him and fall into the net.
Dundee then managed to regroup and stand firm for another 10 minutes before the Surrey-side finally tied the game up on 35 minutes as another long-range effort found the twine, this time coming from Jordan Klimek.
A slashing penalty against Guildford’s Tristan Frei in the 39th minute then put the visitors on the backfoot, however Ferguson would not let that stop him from furthering the Flames title-dreams.
The Canadian rushed forward and slipped his shot between the legs of Preece to give the English club their first lead of the night with a shorthanded effort.
Despite the setback, the Stars were quick to respond and utilised their powerplay as defenseman, Cole Fraser fired in a rising shot from just inside the blueline and it would find a way past Burman, 23 seconds after Guildford had taken the lead.
In the third session, the Flames would continue their hunt to get back in front and when Barriga was penalised for tripping, Ryan Tait would restore their lead on 44 minutes as he finished off a rebound at the back post.
Dundee fought hard for another equaliser but were unable to break Guildford down again and when they tried to gamble in the final minutes, with a little time left on a powerplay, they were unable to get Preece off for an extra attacker.
The British goalie had been edging towards the bench, however the Flames would not surrender the puck and with 46 seconds left on the clock, Peter Crinella broke out with the puck and went one-on-one with Preece, eventually shooting over the glove to make it 6-4 to the Flames.
Guildford have kept their diminishing title hopes alive and will be looking for an improved performance tomorrow on home ice as the fixture is reversed and they welcome Dundee, who seek vengeance.
Man of the Match
Dundee: #10 Philippe Sanche
Guildford: #18 Brett Ferguson
1-0 Hugo Reinhardt (Philippe Sanche) 09:23
2-0 Philippe Sanche (Unassisted) 13:54 SHG
3-0 Elijiah Barriga (Philippe Sanche, Cole Fraser) 18:41 PPG
3-1 Mike Crocock (Ryan Tait) 25:16
3-2 Brett Ferguson (Alex Yuill, Mike Crocock) 26:07
3-3 Jordan Klimek (Ian McNulty, Levi Cable) 35:51
3-4 Brett Ferguson (Robert Lachowicz) 38:50 SHG
4-4 Cole Fraser (Carter Folk, Ryan Verrier) 39:12 PPG
4-5 Ryan Tait (Brett Ferguson, Daniel Tedesco) 43:50 PPG
4-6 Peter Crinella (Brett Ferguson, Robert Lachowicz) 59:14
All images: Derek Black.