Goals from Jordan Boucher (PPG), Slater Doggett and Scott Conway (PPG) separated the sides on a night where a frustrated Flyers had no answer for a relentless, high tempo Belfast press.
Belfast brushed off an early penalty when Slater Doggett was called for cross checking at 2:36, as did Fife as Jonas Emmerdahl sat for tripping at 7:02.
However, a James Isaacs delay of game penalty at 10:12 was quickly followed by a Colton Waltz tripping call at 11:16, and the Giants found themselves with 57 seconds of 5 on 3 power play.
Belfast’s offensive efforts were initially scuppered by a clumsy offside, followed by the puck rolling out of the offensive zone on the resulting faceoff. Fife’s three-man kill unit sat high at the blue line, preventing an onslaught on goalie Shane Owen.
Despite the hosts holding for the return of their fourth man, the Giants began to click. The puck rang the crossbar before Jordan Boucher tipped Griffin Reinhart’s one timer to edge his side ahead at 13:04 (PPG 0-1)
A Flyers breakaway off the drop was denied by a stunning Tyler Beskorowany glove save from Jacob Benson’s shot, and just over a minute later Slater Doggett’s net front presence produced Belfast’s second. (Assist: Ciaran Long, 14:22). (0-2)
In a moment of déjà vu, a second Flyers breakaway off the drop was denied by Beskorowany’s sprawling right leg in the last action of an entertaining opening period.
The Giants remained dominant as the middle period got underway, helped in no small part by Fife’s continued issues with the penalty box.
Greg Chase was called for unsportsmanlike conduct at 25:34, as the referees began to draw the ire of the home support.
The temperature was raised at 31:09 when Carson Stadnyk sat for cross checking, and Belfast pounced with their second power play goal of the game. This time Scott Conway found the net from a Jeff Baum pass, leaving the Flyers with a mountain to climb at the halfway point. (0-3)
Scott Conway’s hit on Stadnyk near the boards in the 33rd
minute went unpunished by the officials, and by the time Fife’s Jonas Emmerdahl was whistled for a soft tripping call at 35:06, the Flyers faithful were apoplectic.
There was minor reprieve (and sarcastic applause) as Jordan Boucher (holding, 37:23) and Mark Garside (tripping, 38:38) handed the Flyers a 5 on 3 power play of their own, but Belfast’s penalty kill unit and a comfortable Tyler Beskorowany remained steadfast as time elapsed.
With Garside still in the box, the Giants opened the period facing a 5 on 3 kill as Scott Conway sat for slashing at 40:22.
However, save for a single frantic goal mouth scramble which Belfast’s defencemen saw safely over the blue line, the game all but fizzled out in the third period.
Somewhat staggeringly, the penalty boxes also remained empty for the remainder of regulation.
A lacklustre Fife Flyers ground out the clock but ultimately had no answer for the Giants’ consistent high press, their strength on the forecheck and their late game tempo. By the final buzzer, the hosts had been outshot by 41 to 25, and soundly beaten.
The Belfast Giants’ Scottish road-trip continues tomorrow LIVE on Premier Sports TV at 4:00pm, as they arrive in Braehead to take on the Glasgow Clan.
Next weekend, the Giants return home to The SSE Arena to take on the Fife Flyers on Saturday 11th December at 7:00pm, and the Nottingham Panthers on Sunday 12th December at 4:00pm. Tickets for both games are on sale NOW!
Images: Fife Flyers Images.