Fife Flyers’ winning run on home ice ends with defeat to Cardiff Devils

Fife Flyers’ winning streak on home ice came rto an end on Sunday as Cardiff Devils skated to a 4-2 win in Kirkcaldy.

Sunday, 21st November 2021, 9:31 pm

Two powerplay goals and a late empty net strike sealed their fate as the Welsh side completed a four-point weekend in Scotland.

In truth, the better team won.

Two goals in the opening period gave Devils a cushion Fife nibbled away at but never quite managed to overhaul, ending their four-game winning run on home ice.

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Craig Peacock at the face off for Fife Flyers against Cardiff Devils (Pic: Jillian McFarlane)

There certainly were positives in defeat, but the team desperately needs those additional imports signed to give it the depth and strength it needs to run with teams such as Devils.

Chase Schaber remains the mystery absentee with one full month now passing since his signing and no appearance yet on the ice - and no explanation for it either. The player's absence remains the main talking point in the stands.

How quickly he can get up to match fitness in a league well into its groove remains to be seen.

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Action from Fife Flyers v Cardiff Devils (Pic: Jillian McFarlane)

But on the plus side, he, and any other new faces, will be stepping into a side markedly improved from the one which made such a poor start to the campaign.

Against Devils they carved out some good chances, and soaked up huge pressure - the puck didn’t drop for them, but at 3-2 they had a fighting chance until gambling on pulling netminder Shane Owen in the closing two minutes and conceding an empty-netter.

Their third period was their best as they came back off the ropes at 3-1 down to make a real game of it, but Devils had enough in the tank to ensure they kept a solid enough grip on proceedings.

Brodie Reid had Devils ahead with a goal at the back door with 11 minutes played, and it was 2-0 after 13 minutes - Stephen Dixon netting on the powerplay.

Flyers’ response was immediate with defenceman Imants Lescovs drilling home form the blue line to spike the visitors’ momentum, but they couldn’t grab a game-tying goal in the second.

Brandon McNally’s powerplay counter after 25 minutes turned the balance back in favour of the Welsh visitors, forcing Fife on to the offensive from the start of the third period.

Greg Chase and Matt Carter both had good chances, but they couldn’t deliver on a 46th minute powerplay when Ben Davies was called for hooking.

It took Fife until the 52nd minute to grab their second strike - James Anderson ringing the red light to set up a grandstand finale.

With less than two minutes remaining, Todd Dutiaume, head coach called a time out and replaced netminder Shane Owen with the extra skater, but hopes of an equaliser ended as McNally pursued a puck down into the corner and flicked it into the empty net to seal a 4-2 victory.

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