Manchester Phoenix bitten by the Dogs

Messenger Newspapers: Michal Psurny Michal Psurny

Sheffield Steeldogs 4 Manchester Phoenix 2

MANCHESTER Phoenix made the short journey across the hills to take on the Sheffield Steeldog in a feisty affair that boiled over at the end of the game Phoenix started well and pinned the Dogs in their own zone and it was no surprise when they took the lead after Frankie Bakrlik got his stick on a loose puck and it somehow found its way past Dalibor Sedlar in the Sheffield net.

Assists went to Andrew McKinney and Robert Schnabel.

The Steeldogs hit the equaliser when a poor line change left Ben Morgan alone just inside the blue line and his rasper of a shot flew past Stephen Fone.

Steeldogs lost Craig Elliot to the high sticks rule after 13 minutes when he accidentally caught James Archer in the face with his stick. The match penalty on him was downgraded after Archer returned to the game shortly afterwards.

Phoenix continued their domination but a mixture of poor shooting and great goaltending kept the score at 1-1 at the end of the first period.

The second period was more of an end to end affair with the Steeldogs having more of the play.

Phoenix were still creating chances but Sedlar was having a great night keeping his goal intact.

Steeldogs took the lead against the run of play when top sniper Lubomir Korhon broke away to score.

Phoenix started the third period in the same vein as the first two but could not get many quality shots on net and the Steeldogs scored a third with six minutes to go when Greg Wood broke free to face Stephen Fone one on one and the Steeldogs’ skipper made no mistake.

Shortly before the goal, the Dogs had one washed out as debutant Tom Squires put the puck in the net long after the whistle had gone.

Michal Psurny took offence to that late shot and was assessed a 10 minute misconduct for holding the face mask.

Squires also sat out 10 minutes on a misconduct.

Frankie Bakrlik scored with just less than three minutes to go to give the large contingent of away fans some hope but it was not to be and the Steeldogs capped their night with an empty net goal with19 seconds left.

However, the main talking point will be the brawl that took place with seven seconds left as fights broke out all over the ice.

Ten minutes of mayhem took place before order was restored and the final seconds were played out.

Four minute roughing penalties were dished out to Lee Haywood, Andrew Hirst, Lloyd Gibson and eight to Callum Pattison of the Dogs.

Similar roughing penalties were given to Phoenix players Robert Schnabel, Jacob Heron and Andrew McKinney with Joe Graham picking up eight minutes.

Phoenix player coach, Tony Hand picked up a 10 minute misconduct at the same time after he dropped the gloves with Greg Wood. Unfortunately Mr Wood refused the offer for some reason and Hand was called.

This was a typical Phoenix-Steeldogs affair with the Dogs taking their chances and an excellent netminding display by Sedlar.

Phoenix dominated most of the game but fell short in front of goal.

Results elsewhere meant that Phoenix remained top of the league.

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