Fife Flyers season ended with a 7-6 sudden death overtime defeat at the hands of Braehead Clan this afternoon.
The result came in the third place play-off - a match neither team wanted to be in.
In truth it was a check-free, low-gear non-event. These matches always are - lunchtime fillers to flesh out the schedule before the showcase final.
Flyers were 4-0 up only to cough six straight goals before tying the game and taking it into overtime.
Coach Todd Dutiaume gave everyone ice time to let them play as a team one last time, but the intensity which marked their stunning charge into the semi-finals wasn’t there. Ditto Braehead who iced their back-up netminder Mike Will.
‘‘These games are strange,’’ he said. ‘’You don’t want to get inured, and both ourselves and Braehead left everything on the ice last night. We were both still disappointed and pretty drained to be honest. so it’s pretty hard to motivate a team.’’
In a near penalty-free game - Fife took three minors, Braehead none - Flyers went ahead through Euan Forsyth with a slapshot at 4:$2.
Jordan Fulton then set up Josh Scoon for the first of his two goals at 15:09, with Jamie Wilson netting number three just 13 seconds into the second.
Scoon then dangled the puck beautifully for 4-0 at 24:33 - nutmegging the defenceman and sliding it under Will from close range.
Game over? Not quite.
Just as the Clan fans started to sing ‘’wake up Braehead’’ they came alive with a goal-rush.
Tristan Harper fired home the first at 30:46, and by 43:51 they were 6-4 up - Lust, Smith, Haywood and a double for Champagne confirming that this game, like all third place matches, was destined to be a shoot-out.
Flyers retrieved the situation with two goals from Derek Roehl and Ned Luckacevic.
I suspect both teams would have happily shared the spoils, but rules dictate ten minutes sudden death four on four hockey and only then did we see a glimpse of their instinctive competitive edge.
Both had chances to win it, but the final strike of the 2013-14 season came at 63:57 as Clan broke down the ice and Ed McGrane shot home.
Bragging rights to Braehead, but, in truth, this game won’t even merit a footnote in the season’s archives.
For 2014-15 let’s scrap it and fill the time with a junior game... or nothing at all.
Asking two beaten semi-finalists to lace up and go again with minimal turnover is simply nonsensical.