Jamie Crooks had a Hat Trick and the Flames rallied from 3-1 down with 3 straight in the 2nd to take a lead they would hold the rest of the way for a 5-4 win over the visiting Sheffield Steelers.
Steelers got an early start with a goal by Marek Troncinsky just over 2 minutes in, but a Crooks bullet on a powerplay shortly thereafter squared it at a goal each and that was how things stayed through the opening frame.
The visitors went ahead by a pair before the game reached halfway thanks to Nikolai Lemtyugov at 24:31 and Marc-Olivier Vallerand at 29:05, but 3 goals a little over 3 minutes apart for Spectrum’s men suddenly had them in front at the close of the 2nd. Crooks 2nd of the contest on a 33rd minute powerplay made it 3-2. Braylon Shmyr a little more than 2 minutes later levelled, and Kruise Reddick 46 seconds after that had the home team holding the slight edge.
At 45:12 Crooks completed a Hat Trick and offered a bit of needed insurance by putting the Flames ahead 5-3 to ensure a reply less than 5 minutes from time through Ben O’Connor would not change the ultimate result.
“Any win we get we are happy with, but to come back here on our 3rd game in 3 nights, and recover from a 2 goal deficit to pick up a win against the league leaders is a pretty special evening,” concluded Paul Dixon.
“When you are in the mindset that it is your 3rd in 3 nights, and you suddenly find you are down a couple of goals halfway through it would have been easy to fold up the tent and hobble through the rest of the game, but these guys didn’t do that, and they should be particularly proud of that.”
“Because of a schedule change we now have next weekend off entirely, and these guys have earned a very rare in season break for a few days, and hopefully we can come back and be re-energized for the final push down the stretch and into the playoffs.”