Elite Series Day 18: Panthers bag OT winner as Keck shines again

Jubilant Panthers players celebrate their overtime win over Steelers (PHOTO: Karl Denham)

The final weekend of the ‘regular season’ saw the players refreshed after a day or two off and back and raring to go help their team get the highest placing they can in the standings ahead of the play-offs.

The matches between Coventry and Manchester then Sheffield and Nottingham would go some way to deciding how that could pan out, or let it carry over to Sunday’s finale.

It was a big day nonetheless for all four teams.

DAILY HEADLINES

PRE-GAME POLLS

GAME RECAP

COVENTRY BLAZE 6 MANCHESTER STORM 3

A third period comeback from Coventry Blaze clinched their first win in three as Tristan Keck continued to light up the tournament with a hat-trick.

The result conformed Sheffield Steelers are top seeds for the play-offs, but it’s a result that certainly gives Coventry some momentum going into the final.

Ross Venus’ tap-in at the backdoor got them in front after six minutes, with Keck adding a second in the last minute of the first period with a shorthanded effort into the top shelf.

Dallas Ehrhardt got one back for Storm around the half hour mark, with Jacob Lundell Noer equalising four minutes later.

By the end of the period, Ryan Finnerty’s side were ahead thanks to a shorthanded goal by former Blaze hero Ben Lake.

Whatever Danny Stewart said to his team at the break to gee them up certainly helped, but it took a bit of time for them to take the first step.

Simen Andre Edvardsen got them there to tie the game at three midway through the final period and suddenly, momentum swung in Coventry’s favour and they never looked back.

David Clements put them in front on the powerplay with an excellent coast-to-coast finish, with Keck netting his second and Blaze’s fifth as Storm struggled to find a response.

Keck was back for more with an empty net finish to make sure of the points, putting his team into second in the standings.

SHOTS ON GOAL: Blaze 29 Storm 42

GOALSCORERS:

Blaze – Ross Venus (06:32 – Edvardsen, Jermain PP); Tristan Keck (19:01 – Clements SH); Simon Andre Edvardsen (49:35 – Venus, Pohlkamp); David Clements (53:00 – Owen PP); Tristan Keck (54:44 – Hammond); Tristan Keck (59:32 – Hammond)

Storm – Dallas Ehrhardt (29:46 – unassisted); Jacob Lundell Noer (33:47 – Klavestad); Ben Lake (38:59 – Simmonds, Sullivan SH) 

POST GAME REACTION

GAME RECAP

SHEFFIELD STEELERS 4 NOTTINGHAM PANTHERS 5 (AFTER OVERTIME)

Christophe Boivin’s overtime winner saw Nottingham Panthers plunder victory from the jaws of defeat as they came from 3-0 down against Sheffield Steelers to take both points.

Steelers may have been confirmed as top seeds for the play-offs, but they wouldn’t have liked to end up on the losing side, especially after a having a three-goal lead.

It all started so well when Tanner Eberle was put through on Ben Bowns by Liam Kirk and finished well to opening the scoring after 12 seconds – a new Elite League record.

Eberle got his and Steelers’ second after seven minutes, with a little help from Kirk again and their statement of intent was clear.

Goal number three came shortly after, with Eberle setting up Kirk this time, finishing a low one past Bowns and any Panthers fans would have had their hands covering their eyes at this point.

Some comfort came in the form of Brett Perlini who scored at 14 minutes to serve as a slight reminder they were still in this game.

By the half hour mark, Austin Cangelosi had beaten Ben Churchfield five hole to pull Panthers to within a goal and things suddenly got interesting.

Ollie Betteridge had Nottingham level by the end of the second, his shot going in off the post and we were all square.

Steelers put themselves in front again through Eberle, completing his hat-trick and his second in the competition.  The assists from Kirk and Mikyska meant it was four-point nights for all three players.

But Panthers had a response once more as Dominic Talbot-Tassi’s shot flew into the net and it proved to be the strike that took the game into overtime.

The extra period was only 17 seconds when Boivin tucked away Cangelosi’s right sided pass from close range to claim what looked like an unlikely result at one point.

SHOTS ON GOAL: Steelers 34 Panthers 32

GOALSCORERS:

Steelers – Tanner Eberle (00:12 – Kirk, Mikyska); Tanner Eberle (07:11 – Kirk, Mikyska); Liam Kirk (10:39 – Eberle, Mikyska); Tanner Eberle (43:53 – Mikyska, Kirk)

Panthers – Brett Perlini (14:51 – Boivin, Domingue PP); Austin Cangelosi (29:22 – Talbot-Tassi); Ollie Betteridge (39:04 – Lachowicz); Dominic Talbot-Tassi (48:19 – Matheson, Cangelosi PP); Boivin (60:17 – Cangelosi)

POST GAME REACTION

PHOTOS OF THE DAY

(PHOTO: Scott Wiggins)
(PHOTO: Scott Wiggins)
(PHOTO: Scott Wiggins)
(PHOTO: Mark Ferriss)
(PHOTO: Mark Ferriss)
(PHOTO: Dean Woolley)
(PHOTO: Dean Woolley)
(PHOTO: Dean Woolley)
(PHOTO: Karl Denham)
(PHOTO: Karl Denham)

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