Belfast Telegraph

Belfast Giants slip after title door opens

By Stuart McKinley

The Belfast Giants failed to take full advantage of a favour from the Nottingham Panthers as they suffered a penalty shoot-out defeat against the Fife Flyers.

Earlier on in the day Nottingham beat Elite League leaders Braehead Clan 6-3, giving the Giants the chance to close the gap to just three points.

The Giants were 2-1 and 4-3 up in the game, but after a 4-4 draw in regulation time they failed to score in the shoot-out and Ned Lukacevic's strike won the game for Fife, meaning Steve Thornton's men slip to third in the table, behind Nottingham.

After a comfortable 5-2 win over the Flyers on Saturday night, the Giants found themselves behind early when Bobby Chaumont scored at 3:42.

Mark McCutcheon levelled matters within a minute and the Giants were ahead 59 seconds into the second period thanks to Colin Shields.

Kyle Haines (26:13) and Jamie Milam (32:02) both scored on powerplay to put Fife 3-2 up in an exciting game.

It was the Giants, however, who led at the end of the second period as Darryl Lloyd (34:23) and Adam Keefe (39:25) found the net.

Lukacevic was the only scorer in the third period and then he ended up the match-winning hero in the shoot-out.

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