A tough opening period in which the visiting Flames fell behind by 4 goals put them on a road from which they would not recover; ultimately dropping a 5-3 score at Sheffield Steelers.
Steelers opened the scoring on a powerplay at 11:47 with a Marc-Olivier Vallerand strike and doubled their advantage less than a minute later through Jonathan Phillips. Brendan Connolly and James Bettauer follow ups just 35 seconds apart late in the frame had the home team well in command at 4-0.
A couple of minutes past halfway, Steelers extended to 5 -0 with another Bettauer marker, but a reply 23 seconds later from Corbin Baldwin got the Flames started and a last minute TJ Foster goal pulled them within 3 to start the 3rd.
Ian Watters clawed another back in the 46th minute, but in the end the hole was too deep for a full comeback effort.
“Any time you spot a team 4 goals in the 1st period you are going to be in for a long night,” admitted Paul Dixon. “
“Steelers put a lot of pressure on us in the 1st and they got a good number of shots and made some of the better ones count. They didn’t dominate us like that for the rest of the game but once you are chasing that kind of scoreline you are in a lot of trouble, and on the vast majority of nights you are not recovering from deficits that get into 4 and 5 goal spreads.”
“We are happy to get another chance at them right away here on home ice Sunday, so I think the best thing we can do is hit the delete button on this one for now and just get ourselves ready for a brand new start tomorrow which will start on 0-0.”