By Kris Smith
The Kitmart Dundee Stars claimed their second win in Nottingham this season and second win of the weekend, thanks to Matt Bissonnette’s overtime winner on Sunday night.
Stars continued to ice a full line-up for their last match of a three-game road trip, while Panthers did not dress Joseph Hazeldine, Dylan Olsen and Patrick Munson.
It was a slow start for Dundee as Pontus Sjögren was forced to stop numerous shots from the home team but they were handed their first chance to get ahead as Jaynen Rissling was penalised for holding in the 4th minute.
Stars failed to capitalise on the powerplay before having to fend off more Panthers attacks. However, the Tayside team opened the scoring when Mike Sullivan beat Michael Garnett in the 16th minute.
Shortly after the restart, Robert Farmer was penalised for charging, giving Dundee an opportunity to swiftly double their lead but again they could not make use of the extra skater.
A narrow lead after 20 minutes was a step in the right direction for Stars but much more would be needed to knock Nottingham off their game.
The second stanza was goalless and clean with both teams exchanging attacking moves. Both defences had stepped and shut down each attack, with both goaltenders playing a strong part too.
Stars entered the third period with their 1-0 lead still intact but a holding penalty against Petr Chaloupka in the 46th minute, proved to be costly. 51 seconds into the powerplay, Luke Pither smashed a shot past Sjögren to tie the game.
Again, Nottingham’s discipline was poor after the restart as Alexandre Bolduc was given a two plus 10 penalty for boarding after 47 minutes. Another powerplay chance was wasted by Dundee but more penalties would come as Lukas Lundvald and Rissling tied up on the boards before a bit of afters.
With two penalties against Rissling and one on Dundee’s Lundvald, Omar Pacha’s Stars were handed a fourth chance on the powerplay in the 54th minute. It was more disappointment for the visitors as they failed to find what could have been the game-winning-goal.
The teams could not be separated after 60 minutes and overtime was required but it took no less than 16 seconds for Matt Bissonnette to net the winner for Dundee. That goal secured the second point and another critical one for the playoff push.
‘Man of the Match’ awards went to Dylan Richard and Dundee’s Connor Cox.
Four points out of six was a huge success for Stars in what predictably was a tough triple header but Pacha’s men played some of their best hockey, however with Coventry Blaze and Manchester Storm both picking up wins at home, Dundee remain one point outside the playoff spots.
There is no time to celebrate this weekend’s success as fellow playoff push rivals, Coventry come to Dundee on Wednesday.