Steelers opening weekend against the Nottingham Panthers was split, following Saturday’s 4-1 home victory the Panthers bounced back with a come from behind performance and a late winner to take Sunday’s game 4-3 with Otto Nieminen scoring twice.
Steelers goals coming from Sam Jones, Daniel Ciampini and Brett Neumann.
Team news for the Steelers is that Kameron Kielly makes his debut with Marco Vallerand sitting this one out after picking up a knock in Saturday’s game
It was the Panthers who took an early lead when Mathieu Lemay scored at 04.04
Steelers levelled at 7.53 as Balmas and Allen assisted on a lovely finish from Sam Jones (1-1)
Moments later Daniel Ciampini added a 2nd for the Steelers at 8.39 with great hands to beat Robinson in the Panthers net at 08.39 (1-2)
Panthers were back on the scoresheet at 9.59 when Henbrandt tied the scoring at 2-2
4 Goals in 10 minutes and then 10 minutes of action but with no further scoring.
Into the middle period and Sam Jones took a 2 minute hooking minor at 21.54 to give the Panthers their first Powerplay opportunity.
Otto Nieminen scored his second goal of the weekend at 30.34 to regain his side the advantage
Steelers had two late power-play chances of their own, first with Ryczek off for hooking and then Lemay with a high sticks penalty – Steelers failing to convert
As the final period developed the Steelers looked more and more likely to get back in the game
Panthers net minder Mike Robinson making a string of excellent saves
Eventually Steelers broke through when Brett Neumann netted from close range off a nice feed from Patrick Watling – we were tied at 3-3
With the game looking like it was to go into overtime the Panthers struck, confusion caused a turnover with Otto Nieminen netting his second of the night and third of the weekend – it was to be a game winning goal.
Steelers pulled Anthony Morrone in goal twice in the final moments but weren’t helped by a late penalty against Mark Simpson in the final moments.
Final score: Panthers 4-3 Steelers