Goals for everyone!
Edinburgh Capitals faced Dundee Stars at Murrayfield on Sunday in an entertaining game, but one which ultimately saw the Capitals defeated 9-4.
The game saw D’Orazio, the Capitals player/coach, return to play but Boyd and Beskorowany were on the injured list.
The first period started with an early goal for the Stars, with just over three minutes played, when Hart burned past Mosio, who had dropped back on defence, and went in alone on goal, forcing McLaughlin to commit before slotting it neatly past him.
After that, long periods were relatively even play, although when Dundee were in the offensive end, they were much more effective at taking shots than the Capitals were. Gradually the Stars took over and drove play, forcing the Capitals into some desperate defending. Despite the possession the Stars were able to win, they were unable to convert it into goals.
As the period ticked on however, the Capitals played themselves back into it, which culminated in Banashkov beating Fullerton to level the game. Valeev and Anderson were awarded the assists.
As the final minutes ran out, Cazzola forced a turnover and broke for the net. De Concilys defended him hard all the way, which resulted in de Concilys going into Fullerton and then both of them into the net. It was quickly apparent that de Concilys had been injured on the play and he was assisted from the ice. He would not return.
With less than a minute gone in the second, a very slow line change let the Stars gain a two-man advantage, and Dundee team took the lead (Pachar). The Capitals then conceded two more goals in the next five minutes (scorers Mastrodicasa and Lundvald) to give the Stars a 4-1 lead.
Bizarrely, a penalty taken by Mosio (slashing) might have given the Capitals the opportunity to regroup and refocus. The penalty kill was very static, but McLaughlin was, as the adage goes, the best penalty killer and he fought off many shots from the Stars.
Two minutes later, the Capitals scored their second of the game, Cazzola finding Podzins alone in front of the goal. He waited for Fullerton to commit before netting it safely to bring the Capitals within two.
The Capitals continued to put pressure on the Stars, seemingly winning neutral ice battle after neutral ice battle, but couldn’t get another past Fullerton.
Stars were able to score their fifth on the counter-attack though, with two minutes of the second to play when Lundvald broke through for a sweet shot which beat McLaughlin cleanly, giving the Stars a 5-2 lead.
However the action of the second period was not over. Following a big, legal, open-ice hit by King, gloves were dropped between King and Cownie in front of the benches. King is small, but determined and was generally felt to have come out better; in addition, Cownie was awarded the extra penalty, giving the Capitals the power play. All-in-all, not a good outcome for Cownie.
The Capitals started the third on the power play, but were unable to score, Stars prevented them getting set in the offensive zone. Then to add to Capitals woes, Stars broke through easily on the net at the end of the power play where Jensen finished the play to take the lead to 6-2.
It was Jensen who also scored the Star’s 7th, with a good power move through the crease after the Capitals let him go in alone and unchecked on net. Frustrating goal to watch, but a really nice move from Jensen.
However, the Capitals were still pushing and Podzins, one of the most noticeable players all night, got a breakaway which was stymied by Pachar. Pachar was penalised for the play - but there was no penalty shot awarded, despite Podzins being deprived of a scoring chance.
Dundee took the opportunity to bring Holland their back-up goalie on.
Well into the power play Mosio tripped one of the Stars. Inglis took offence to this, and gloves were tossed at centre ice. This was a real heavyweight battle and fairly evenly fought. Inglis eventually pulled Mosio’s jersey off and the lineys stepped in at that point.
Mosio drew the extra penalty for tripping and also received a misconduct. Both players were also given an illegal equipment penalty - Toby perhaps making a point on the second fight of the night.
However, the fall-out from the fight also saw the most thoughtful act of the night, Mimar was seen taking bags of ice over to both players in the box to win the ‘nicest guy on the ice’ award for the game.
Hockey - one minute you’re watching two guys from different teams punching each other and the next they’re concerned that someone might have got hurt during the fight!
As a result of all of that, the Capitals had to kill a power play - and managed to do so. Although trailing badly, they kept pressing and it was Caly Robertson, the 17 year old, who was the beneficiary, scoring an unassisted goal after a couple of close attempts, to bring the score to 6-3. But Stars counter-punched to immediately make it 7-3 and that goal felt like the back-breaker.
Dundee would get their ninth 6 seconds into a power play after Grighors was penalised for roughing in a post whistle scrum around McLaughlin’s net.
But the real bright spot of the game was Caly Robertson getting his second of the night, as he went to the net to get a feed from Cazzola and Anderson to put him on hat-trick watch.
With only just over two minutes remaining, time was tight. But the Capitals tried - he was back out with everyone, and at every opportunity he was going to the net but despite a couple of chances it was not to be. Time ran out and Stars won 9-4.
Another disappointing result from the Capitals, but it was an entertaining and eventful game and the goals from Caly Robertson brought a bright spot to the game. Cazzola was always worth watching, making some great plays - in attack and defence.
Stars MoM was Lundvald with two goals (although Mimar had a four point game and also was the nicest guy on the ice so was probably unfairly overlooked).
Caps MoM - who else but Caly Robertson?