European heartbreak for Giants

January 13, 2019 8:37 pm

Belfast Giants 2-3 PS Arlan Kokshetau

It just wasn’t to be for Belfast Giants tonight, as the Continental Cup final round hosts suffered shootout heartbreak again Kazakh side Arlan Kokshetau.

The Kazakh side ended the first period two goals ahead as Sergei Yegorov’s tip and then Vadmim Yermolayev’s blue line effort gave Arlan a healthy lead.

The Giants had to work hard to get themselves back in the game against a Kazakh side that kept them out wide in their own zone. Eventually they got themselves back in the game, a scramble around the crease resulted in Chris Higgins forcing the puck over the line at 47:44. 72 seconds later the SSE Arena erupted as Dustin Johner’s wrist-shot hit the net and sparked wild celebrations with the Giants drawing level.

The Giants had to kill off a 5-on-3 with just under eight minutes to go, and almost won the game on a late man advantage but it went to overtime. The Giants also had to kill off a penalty in the extra period, but with no goals the title was to be decided on a shootout. The Giants had to score in Round 5 to stay alive, and Dustin Johner obliged. However when David Rutherford missed in sudden-death, Yevgeni Gasnikov stepped up to win the Continental Cup for Arlan.

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