Flyers netminder Regan reflects on cruel overtime defeat

It's devastation for Flyers netminder Kevin Regan as Belfast Giants score an overtime winner with three seconds to spare. Pic: Steve Gunn
It's devastation for Flyers netminder Kevin Regan as Belfast Giants score an overtime winner with three seconds to spare. Pic: Steve Gunn

Kevin Regan glanced up at the Fife Ice Arena clock after conceding a goal in overtime on Saturday and his heart sank.

Belfast Giants defenceman Jeffrey Szwez had just sent the game-winning slapshot into the Fife Flyers net with just three seconds left.

It left the Fife netminder, who produced a man of the match display against the EIHL champions, completely crestfallen.

“It was a brutal ending, and it will probably sit with us for a while,” he told the Press.

“I was shocked when I looked up and saw there was only three seconds left.

“I’ll have to take a look at the video again because I’m still not sure how it happened.

“We felt pretty confident we could take the game to penalties, so it’s tough.

“Maybe two months ago we’d have been really happy with a point against Belfast, but the way we’re playing right now, we’re disappointed.

“Our goal was to win the game, and we felt we played well enough to do that.”

It was another late setback for Regan following the controversial penalty shot decision against him in the final 10 seconds against Cardiff the previous week.

“It was one of the craziest things I’ve ever seen in my life,” he said. “My stick was caught in the net, and I didn’t realise how little time was left. If I did I might have dropped it.

“But I didn’t want to be up against a six-on-four without my stick so I tried to pull it out. The net came off, and the ref thought it was intentional.

“I didn’t even know that was a rule, but you’ve got to respect the call and just take it.”

Regan is enjoying being part of Flyers push for the play-offs after struggling through the team’s poor form earlier in the season.

“It was probably one of the toughest stretches I’ve ever been through in my career,” he said. “But credit to the team and staff, we never really lost sight of things.

“We had guys playing hurt and we had suspensions,but now you see that when we have a full line-up we’re a pretty good team.

“Everyone is playing great in front of me - it’s almost like night and day for me.

“We’re playing much better in defence, and it’s leading to a lot more offence for us.

“I’m feeling really comfortable again, and it’s an easier game for me now - a lot less scrambly.”

Eight wins in 10 have put Flyers into a position where, with seven games left, they now have their play-off hopes back in their own hands.

“It might take seven wins and that’s how we have to look at it,” Regan added.

“It would be huge for the team and especially our coaching staff - who stuck with this whole team - if we could make the play-offs.”