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Belfast Giants secure emphatic win over Dundee Stars

Belfast Giants 7 - Dundee Stars 4

By Adam McKendry

The Belfast Giants banished the bad feeling from last weekend and returned to winning ways with a 7-4 win over the Dundee Stars at the SSE Arena.

The Challenge Cup win puts the Giants top of their group after two games as they head to Edinburgh on Sunday to face the Capitals in another group match.

Adam Keefe elected to start Jackson Whistle in nets, while Dundee had to deal with the loss of their regular starter Travis Fullerton to injury, with deputy Craig Holland starting instead.

The Giants took an early lead, albeit thanks to some luck, after 1:50 when Dustin Johner skated down the left and his centre of the puck was deflected in by a Dundee defenseman.

At 10:37 it was two, Sébastien Sylvestre getting his first of the night, skating down the right and cutting inside before firing high into the roof of the net past Holland.

And a strong first period was completed at 16:04 when Sylvestre got his second, firing a wrister home from the slot on the powerplay.

Just two minutes into the second period, at 22:33, Darcy Murphy made it four, finishing at the second attempt after Colin Shields’ pass across the face of goal put him in on Holland.

ants v Dundee_021.jpg
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th September 2017 - Photo by William Cherry/Presseye Belfast Giants Darcy Murphy scoring against Dundee Stars during Saturday nights Challenge Cup game at the SSE Arena, Belfast.

But the visitors were threatening a response and they finally got it, taking the advantage of an extra man on the ice at the very end of a powerplay with Jimmy Jensen poking home inside the crease at 25:54.

The two teams then traded goals, Adam Harding getting his second of the season against the Giants at 31:49 before Brendan Connolly found the back of the net at 35:16.

Dundee were to go in happier at the second intermission, however, after Johan Andersson’s goal at 38:04, the forward slamming the puck in emphatically at the back door at the end of a 5-on-3.

But the third period started perfectly for the Giants as Jonathan Ferland restored their three goal advantage, this time he was the one firing home at the back door on the powerplay at 47:03.

And that lead became four, and 7-3, at 51:47 when Ferland blocked a puck in front of the net and fed sideways to the lurking John Kurtz, who finished into the gaping net.

The Stars would have the last laugh though as with only a couple of minutes remaining, Joey de Concilys found space in the slot and fired a low wrister past Whistle at 57:40 after Anthony Mastrodicasa’s pass from behind the net.

Man of the Match: Sébastien Sylvestre

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