By Kris Smith
A massive game at Dundee Ice Arena offered Stars a chance to continue their charge up the league standings. They took on the Guildford Flames who were on a hot streak after beating the Fife Flyers 6-1 last weekend.
Cameron McGiffin returned to the line-up after over a month out, however Riley Stadel did not ice for the first time this season. Guildford were without ex-Star Mikael Lidhammar, Brian Stewart, Rasmus Edström and Richard Krogh.
A quick play by the Flames set up a chance for Jesse Craige and his shot rebounded and fell to Ian Watters, who slipped the puck under Fullerton and it trickled over the line after just 21 seconds. Stars had a good chance to equalise but made nothing of it.
Guildford doubled their lead after a quick pass to the blueline for Carl Ackered who shot the puck for Brett Ferguson to redirect and past Travis Fullerton, Omar Pacha had to settle his stars and used his only timeout after just 1:53.
Dundee got the game’s first powerplay as Jeremy Lundin was penalised for tripping in the fourth minute. The puck was played in front of goal and Brian Hart fired the puck straight at Chris Carrozzi, wasting their only real chance. Shortly after the penalty was killed, Justin Fox dropped the gloves with Ben Davies behind the play.
Fox landed a few heavy punches and a huge uppercut before both lost their balance and fell to the ice. A move started by Johan Andersson ended with the Swede’s shot being held by the Flames goalie. Dundee were gathering momentum but the Flames kept attacking and Fullerton made two big saves to deny the Surrey side but Stars can’t clear.
Fullerton is forced to lie across his line to block several shots but eventually one bounced off his leg and across the line at 13:04. Dundee killed off a Guildford powerplay as they threatened to make it 4-0 but couldn’t extend their lead before the first break.
A much better start for Dundee as they kept the Flames away from goal for the first few minutes but were concerned after Fullerton appeared to have an injury. Dundee were still trying but just could not get on the board. Lundin increased his sides lead to 4-0 at 29:37, he flicked a puck on goal form a wide angle and it went up in the air before falling behind the Dundee goalie and across the line.
Dundee’s best chance came after a quick break and they shot the puck off of the post. Even with another man advantage chance Stars still could not breakdown Paul Dixon’s men as the second period concluded at 4-0.
Justin Fox would not return for the third period but the Flames picked up where they left off and continued to hound the Stars net with goal. Jordan Cownie was boarded by Tomas Nechala but Dundee failed to take advantage of the powerplay. A defensive mistake gifted the puck to Geoff Walker and he fired past Fullerton for Guildford’s fifth goal at 46:29. Dundee had one last powerplay but still failed to make it count, handing Chris Carrozzi a shutout and his side an emphatic 5-0 win.
The Stars will want to turn their weekend around and have the chance to boost their morale when they take on the Edinburgh Capitals tomorrow evening.
Dundee have yet to win a game at Murrayfield this year but as the Caps are pinned to the bottom of the table and have a similar problem of being short benched. Omar Pacha’s men can take advantage of the Caps problems and their low morale after suffering a 8-2 loss to the Braehead Clan last night.