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Pointless weekend for Sheffield Steelers after losses to Fife Flyers and Cardiff Devils

Sheffield Steelers v Fife Flyers. Sheffield's Tim Wallace in the thick of it.
Sheffield Steelers v Fife Flyers. Sheffield's Tim Wallace in the thick of it.

Steeler weekends recently have been like going out to dinner and enjoying the first-course and dessert...while the main course leaves a nasty taste in the mouth.

The team have been beating rivals that they are supposed to, but losing to those Conference rivals they are really judged against.

It seemed manageable - a slight tweak of menu, perhaps?

But this weekend, it definitely went sour with Sheffield losing at Cardiff Devils on Saturday and then spilling ketchup on their lap home to Fife Flyers.

The lack of goalscoring is the most unpalatable part - two goals in two hours.

Steelers - who have on foot in the Challenge Cup semi final after Wednesday’s win Dundee - need to sustain a competitive League position - it’s in their DNA.

Sheffield Steelers goalscorer Andreas Jamtin, at Cardiff

Sheffield Steelers goalscorer Andreas Jamtin, at Cardiff

And two of the players they need most to achieve that combined to open the scoring, Mathieu Roy netting from Zack Fitzgerald at 11:42. But then it all went wrong.

Fife cashed on the Power Play twice in 76 seconds Shayne Stockton and Chase Schaber scoring for the Scots on a five-on-three and a five-on-four caused by penalties to Andreas Jämtin and John Armstrong.

Suddenly the Scots had seized the initiative, in one hell of a turnaround.

Rob Dowd and Mark Matheson tried to force Sheffield level, but Fife held on to their advantage.

Steelers went for a no-goalie strategy in a time out - but it couldn’t trigger the goals they are so badly looking for - in fact, Charlie Mosey scored an empty netter with 52 seconds left. Queue the boos around the Arena rafters.

And they cannot be ignored - nor can the fifth place in the League slot.

* On Saturday, Steelers slipped to their ninth loss in 10 Conference games - defeat now seemingly predictable in the Erhardt division.

Sheffield conceded early in the first two periods and Cardiff were 4-0 up after 26 minutes from Justin Faryna (two) Paul Crowder and Joey Haddad.

With the big guns silent, Sheffield’s only reply came from Jämtin.

RESULTS

Sunday 17th December

Elite League

Cardiff Devils 6 Braehead Clan 4

Coventry Blaze 7 Manchester Storm 2

Edinburgh Capitals 2 Guildford Flames 7

Nottingham Panthers 2 Belfast Giants 6

Sheffield Steelers 1 Fife Flyers 3

FIXTURES

Tuesday 19th December

Challenge Cup Quarter Final 2nd leg

Sheffield Steelers v Dundee Stars - 7.30pm

(Sheffield lead 7-2 from 1st leg)

Wednesday 20th December

Challenge Cup Quarter Final 1st leg

Guildford Flames v Cardiff Devils - 7.00pm

Friday 22nd December

Elite League

Braehead Clan v Cardiff Devils - 7.30pm

Dundee Stars v Fife Flyers - 7.30pm

Manchester Storm v Guildford Flames - 7.30pm

Challenge Cup Quarter Final 1st leg

Milton Keynes Lightning v Nottingham Panthers - 7.00pm

Saturday 23rd December

Elite League

Cardiff Devils v Dundee Stars - 7.00pm

Coventry Blaze v Milton Keynes - 7.00pm

Edinburgh Capitals v Belfast Giants - 5.45pm

Guildford Flames v Fife Flyers - 6.00pm

Nottingham Panthers v Manchester Storm 7.00pm

Sheffield Steelers v Braehead Clan - 7.00pm