The Belfast Giants were called for tripping just 1:12 into the game as Matt Foley sat for two minutes. The Giants killed the penalty and kept pressure away from the defensive zone. The blue line stepped up often in the first with Sam Ruopp carrying the puck deep into the Clan zone, and multiple opportunities from Will Cullen.
However, just five minutes into the first, the Clan made their mark on the scoreboard with a goal from Andrew McLean. (1-0)
The Belfast Giants answered back less than five minutes later thanks to a big effort from forward Tyler Soy. Soy parked himself in front of the crease to knock in a shot from Steve Owre . (1-1)
The remaining half of the first was filled with end-to-end hockey, consisting of scoring opportunities on both sides but being denied by the respective goaltenders.
The following 20 minutes had continued two-way hockey. The Glasgow Clan started with pressure on goaltender Peyton Jones but was shut down before the Giants took control with their own chances.
Less than five minutes into the period, Belfast Giants found themselves on the power play thanks to defenceman Will Cullen drawing a hooking penalty against the Clan’s Stephen Dixon. The Giants were unable to capitalise on the opportunity.
The Giants’ special teams were tested again when they were sent on the penalty kill just over halfway into the period. Forward Darik Angeli tried to stuff the puck past Clan goaltender John Muse but was called for slashing.
The Glasgow Clan were able to get one past the Giants’ goal line on their power play with a goal from Steven McParland. (2-1)
The boxing day dramatics were left for the third period as both teams came out firing. Peyton Jones was tested a few times, including a half breakaway save and some tipped shots that could have caused damage against the away team.
With just eight minutes left in the game, the Glasgow Clan took advantage of a Giants’ defensive error, putting them up by two. John Dunbar was able to get the puck past Jones and it looked like the game was comfortable in Glasgow’s hands. (3-1)
It took just under two minutes for Lewis Hook to answer back for the Belfast Giants by putting one past Muse from the low slot. (3-2)
He wasn’t finished after that goal. Hook came out full cylinders to help set up Matt Foley for yet another Belfast Giants’ goal from the blue line minutes later to tie the game. (3-3)
Giants put heavy pressure on the Clan forcing them to take a penalty in the dying seconds of the game. Andrew McLean sat 2 minutes for high-sticking with three seconds left in regular time.
The Belfast Giants carried their power play into overtime, allowing them to control the play in the offensive zone. The Giants’ powerplay unit was set up to make an across crease pass which resulted in an own goal from Clan defensemen, credited to Belfast Giants’ captain David Goodwin! (4-3)
It’s a quick turnaround for the Stena Line Belfast Giants as they return home to The SSE Arena, Belfast tomorrow, Tuesday 27 December to once again take on the Glasgow Clan. Tickets are on sale HERE!