Fife Flyers find new confidence as they take down title-chasing Sheffield Steelers with midweek win

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Fife Flyers produced one of their best performances in recent weeks to gun down title-chasing Sheffield Steelers 5-3 tonight.

Three unanswered powerplay goals gave them a win which few fans may have predicted, but it didn’t surprise Jeff Hutchins.

The assistant coach said: “After Sunday/s disappointment, we felt confident, and our start showed that.

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“The powerplay has been an area where we have struggled, but the guys looked a lot looser getting that first one - as soon as that went in, a lot of confidence came.”

Face off at Fife Flyers v Sheffield SteelersFace off at Fife Flyers v Sheffield Steelers
Face off at Fife Flyers v Sheffield Steelers

The goal now is to take four points from their weekend games against Glasgow Clan and Coventry Blaze to breathe new life into their bid to make the play-offs.

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Wednesday’s win cut the gap on ninth placed Manchester Storm to four points, and Flyers have a precious game in hand.

They still trail eighth placed Dundee Stars by eight points, and the Taysiders have two games in hand.

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But Hutchins stressed it was one step at a time, explaining: “We have to focus on the team above us - and the gap is down to four points.

“We'll chase them down and see where we get to and then focus on next team.”

The win over Steelers will be a welcome confidence boost for a side that has struggled to deliver a solid 60 minute hockey game.

They worked incredibly hard against short-benched opposition, so much so, Steelers’ coach Aaron Fox commented: “They jumped all over us in period one. They played well and we didn't match their energy.

“We didn't deserve the win, and Fife did.”

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Flyers fell behind to a sixth minute powerplay goal from Robert Dowd, but drew level at 12:19 as Tommi Jokinen on the back boards got the puck to Chris Lawrence who fed defenceman Kyle Thacker, and his shot bounced past netminder Barry Brust.

They went 2-1 up less than 30 seconds from the buzzer when great work by Chris Lawrence dug the puck out of his zone, and sent Jokinen free. His pass to Brandon Magee opened up the ice for a shot straight into the net.

Flyers passed up a couple of gilt-edged opportunities before Steelers tied the game at 38:09 when Evan Mosey switched on the burners, and his drop pass to John Armstrong was swept home.

And the visitors needed just 40 seconds of period three to grab the lead through when Mosey threw the puck out from the corner and Dowd rifled it home.

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Back came Flyers again, and they finished the stronger team.

Jonas Emmerdahl tied the game on the powerplay after 41 minutes before three players combined to deliver back to back strikes.

At 49:32, Magee fired from the right, the light flashed on, Steelers paused but play continued, and Matt Carter’s pass was bundled home by Jacob Benson.

Four minutes later the trio delivered again on the powerplay with Benson ringing the red light.

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Steelers called a time out with 2:26 to play and pulled Brust for the extra skater.

Fife had several long-range shots at the empty net as the clock wound down, and they played our training time to grab a victory few may have predicted but which went down well with all.

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