Belfast Telegraph

Giants still searching for first road win as Clan steal points with third period comeback

Glasgow Clan 3-1 Belfast Giants

Belfast Giants winger Bobby Farnham battles for the puck in front of Glasgow Clan netminder Patrick Killeen (Pic: Al Goold)
Belfast Giants winger Bobby Farnham battles for the puck in front of Glasgow Clan netminder Patrick Killeen (Pic: Al Goold)
Adam McKendry

By Adam McKendry

BRAEHEAD, Sco -- The Belfast Giants' search for a road win continues as they suffered another third period comeback to fall 3-1 at the Glasgow Clan.

Clan captain Matt Haywood was set up by former Giants ace Craig Peacock with 5:29 remaining in the game to snap one home five-hole on Belfast netminder Shane Owen for the game-winner.

Scott Tanski's empty netter with 12 seconds left means the Giants have lost all five of their domestic road games having been either tied or ahead going into the final period and are still searching for that magic formula to break the duck, with their winless streak outside of Belfast now sitting at seven to start the season.

It had been the visitors who had led after a scoreless first period, winger Bobby Farnham taking the puck in the left circle, cutting inside and roofing it backhanded over Clan netminder Patrick Killeen's shoulder early in the second for his third of the season.

But Nolan LaPorte levelled it for the Clan just 2:39 into the third when he picked up a defensive zone giveaway from Paul Swindlehurst and snapped it past Shane Owen, with Haywood getting the winner at 14:31 of the final frame.

Having qualified for the Challenge Cup by taking the Clan to overtime the night before, the Giants couldn't turn it into a great weekend by holding onto their lead and fall to 2-1-1 in the league.

It is yet more frustration for head coach Adam Keefe, whose side had more than enough chances to put the game to bed before the Clan even got back into it.

Liam Reddox couldn't convert on a penalty shot shortly after Farnham's strike - the winger held back by Travis Ehrhardt on the breakaway - while the visitors were 0-for-3 on the powerplay, which failed to click after striking twice the night before.

Twice in the second period they saw the man advantage pass them by when Scott Pitt headed off for back-to-back tripping and elbowing calls, while in the third they couldn't pull back ahead when Ehrhardt sat for cross-checking.

In total, the Giants outshot their hosts 42-15, but ultimately couldn't find that killer touch, with Clan backstop Killeen having another phenomenal night between the pipes by making 41 saves.

And instead that allowed the Scots, who were more methodical with their build-up and picked their shots instead of firing at random on Owen, to only need the two strikes to win the game, with Tanski sliding the puck the length of the ice the clincher.

They waited for the Giants to make the error to level, an aggressive forecheck forcing Swindlehurst into the giveaway behind his own net for LaPorte's equaliser, and then that allowed Haywood to grab the deciding goal.

One pleasing aspect at least for the Giants was the continuation of their excellent penalty kill, which was only called into action once - Matt Pelech off for interference at 16:19 of the second - and also kept their discipline restricted to one infringement.

However, this is another blow for the Giants on the road, and things don't get any easier any time soon, with their next meeting outside of Belfast the small matter of visiting Swedish side Lulea (4-0-1) in the final game of their Champions League campaign on Tuesday (face-off 5pm UK).

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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