Belfast Telegraph

Fortune is finally turning in our favour: Morgan


Looking up: Giants ace Liam Morgan is hoping to build up momentum
Looking up: Giants ace Liam Morgan is hoping to build up momentum
Adam McKendry

By Adam McKendry

After watching Drydn Dow's shot bank off the backboards, off the back of Shane Owen and into the net, the Belfast Giants probably thought their luck was out yet again in Sunday's game against the Dundee Stars.

But sometimes you can see the moment a team's fortunes turn, and it did so 12:29 into the second period in Dundee.

With seemingly nothing on, and coming to the end of a shift and looking a line change, winger Liam Morgan fired on goal from the tightest of angles and somehow squeezed the puck past Stars netminder Alex Leclerc for the most unlikely of goals to make it 3-1 to the visitors.

They would hold on for a 4-1 win over the Scots, improving to 11-7-2 in the Elite League and moving up to third in the standings, but Morgan believes they got a lot more from the game than just the two points.

"That was pretty lucky. It seems like so far this year every one of those bounces has been going against us. It was nice to finally get one of those to go in for us," admitted Morgan.

"I just think we haven't been getting many bounces, and it was nice to see us getting some there in Dundee. It's been the story of our year so far, a couple of good games, a couple of bad games. It's good to get back on track and hopefully we can keep it rolling.

"But hockey is such a weird game, anything can happen. If we get the bounces I think our season will start to go in the right direction. And we've played some good games as well, so we shouldn't get frustrated."

Despite continuing to stutter through the season, the Giants are still just five points off league leaders the Sheffield Steelers, who they welcome to the SSE Arena tonight and tomorrow (both 7pm) for a double-header, having played three games fewer.

This has been one of the most evenly contested seasons in recent memory, and while the Giants are a little fortunate they're still in touch having been far from their best in their opening 20 games, they are equally aware that if they can hit a good run of form then they could potentially steal a march on their rivals.

"Everyone's beating everyone, there's a lot of parity. From talking to guys, before (I came) there would have been bad games to lose, but this year every team is a battle," insisted Morgan.

"That's the way I've seen the league so far, every team is going to show up on every night. We're right there, we're trying to stay positive and knowing the bounces will eventually go our way."

This weekend the Giants will celebrate their 20th anniversary season, and it is fitting that they will do so with two clashes against the league-leading Steelers (14-9-0, first, 28 points) at the SSE Arena.

The team's annual teddy toss will also take place at tomorrow's game, but for the players themselves it's a chance to gain some much-desired revenge for their 5-0 shut-out defeat by the Steelers in Sheffield a week ago.

"I wasn't involved in that game but I watched it, which is even worse when you can't do anything about it," said Morgan.

"We're p****d off with them, they're not our favourite team for sure. I'm looking forward to showing what I can do against them this weekend.

"It could be too early (to be a defining weekend), it might not be. It depends what happens this weekend. We're just hoping to pick up the win on Friday and then move on to Saturday and go for the win there too.

"That would put us in a good position in the league and hopefully will help us find the consistency we've been looking for."

Belfast Telegraph


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