By Kris Smith
The Stars prevailed over the Flames in Dundee last night as they fought back from being behind twice and went on to claim a 5-4 victory.
Guildford’s Matt Alvaro would open the scoring in the 10th minute as he lifted home the rebound from Peter Crinella’s shot after Dundee goalie, Kevin Carr had made the first save.
The Stars then hit some penalty trouble late in the first period but only trailed by one heading into the second session, however the Flames powerplay unit struck quickly to convert on a penalty that spanned into the middle period.
Carr would be unable to get enough on Ryan Tait’s effort as he smacked on off the Canadian keeper and in to the Stars net, just 64 seconds into the period.
Although, Dundee quickly found their feet and replied in less than two minutes as defenseman, Josh Brittain ripped a shot from just inside the blueline that beat Taz Burman up high.
Ryan Valentini then bagged the Stars a powerplay goal of their own to tie the game on 25 minutes, as he fired low past Burman but only moments later, Lewis Hook would restore the English side’s lead as he converted another powerplay goal, with a finish into the top corner inside 27 minutes.
The frenzy of goals did not stop there though and Stars captain, Drydn Dow then buried a fourth powerplay goal in less than eight minutes, as he rifled Valentini’s neatly placed pass first-time past Burman.
With the Tayside team now back level at 3-3, they went in search of the lead were rewarded with a fourth goal on 35 minutes, when Jonathan McBean tapped home the rebound from James Phelan’s shot.
Marc LeFebvre’s men still be one-goal ahead going into the third period and they eventually increased it to a 5-3 lead, as Valentini added his second goal of the night with a skilful move around Burman in the 50th minute.
The Flames were desperate to just get one back and with their goalie off for an extra attacker, Austin Glover got it back to a 5-4 with 54 seconds left to play, but Dundee would then shut them down and hold on to claim the first win of their weekend series against Guildford.
The Flames now play host this evening Surrey and complete their three-games in three nights, with only a point to show so far after an overtime defeat to Glasgow Clan on Friday evening.
Dundee were only missing defenseman, Kris Inglis last night but welcomed back Sean Allen after his recent injury sidelined him for last weekend’s pair of victories, and the same line-up is expected tonight in Guildford.
The Flames started goaltender, Eamon McAdam in Glasgow and are likely to rotate back to the American tonight after Canadian, Burman was between the pipes in Dundee, but they also iced without Turner Ripplinger, Alex Yuill and Zack Milton.
Speaking after last night’s victory, Stars Head Coach, Marc LeFebvre said: “It is a massive two points for us in the standings and that is all that matters.
“It does not matter how we do it, obviously it was a game with a lot of offence.
“They are a team who push the pace a lot and I thought we did a good job nullifying them for the most part but we got some timely going scoring and we won the game at the end of the day, so that is all I can ask for from the guys.”
Then with the focus on tonight’s rematch in Surrey, he continued: “They want to get something out of the weekend and obviously they have not had the best start but it is a tough place to play, as other teams have found out and it is our first time there this season, so they will be ready but so will we.”
Dundee defenseman, Kyle Pouncy then shared how the team were feeling after Saturday’s win and their third victory on the bounce.
He said: “We are very happy to get the win but we know going down to Guildford they are going to have a very strong push on their home ice, so it is a case of tidying up the little things that we can do better.
“We are happy that we won obviously but we know we have a little more still to give, hopefully we can find that and push the pace in Guildford too.
With the winning comes confidence and the team are oozing with it right now, which is crucial and Kyle added: “It is huge, it just gives us that belief that we can do it when we play at our best.
“So, it is just a matter of coming in waves, playing as a unit every game and not taking a shift off because we know we can beat anyone and that is huge to have that belief so we are just trying to ride it as long as we can.
“It was great to see us bounce back from being 2-0 down, so when we can prove that to ourselves even more it is great but obviously, we do not want to be down but that is hockey and things happen.
“So, for us to bounce back, make a game of it and then hold on was hugely important.”
Face-off for tonight’s road game in Guildford is at 6pm.
All images: John Uwins.