By Kris Smith
Stars travelled to Glasgow for a Hogmanay hockey clash with their Scottish rivals, Braehead Clan who secured the two points early on as they shutout Dundee 6-0 on the final day of 2017.
Dundee were tested early as Riley Stadel was sent to the box for holding the stick in the third minute, but they managed to kill off the two-minute minor. However, soon after the kill Braehead’s Jacob Doty collected the rebound from a quick shot and he sent it back towards goal and the puck sneaked under the body of Fullerton at 4:52.
Dundee were given an opportunity to level the score but Malcolm Gould could not bury his chance. Clan were looking very dangerous and Tyler Scofield broke up the free-flowing hockey from both sides as he moved himself into an unmarked position. He was picked out by ex-Dundee Star, Craig Cescon and Scofield elevated his shot over Fullerton, to double the lead at 7:28.
Doty dropped the gloves with Emerson Hrynyk at centre ice as the pair traded huge blows before Doty got the better of Hrynyk but Dundee came away with a powerplay to restart the game.
Doty’s two-minute unsportsmanlike conduct penalty put Dundee on the man advantage and it quickly became a two-man advantage as Matt Haywood was penalised for hooking. Stars failed to take advantage of their 5-on-3 powerplay and still trailed by two goals going into the first break.
A one-timer by Scofield into the roof of the Dundee net extended Clan’s lead to 3-0 just one minute into the second period. Hrynyk almost pulled one back for Stars but his effort went high over the net, before Brendan Brooks danced through the Dundee defence and slotted it past Fullerton for Braehead’s fourth of the evening at 26:02.
The home side continued to dominate despite Dundee creating a handful of chances. Kris Inglis moved into a threatening position but Christopher Bjorklund cut out the pass before it reached the young Scot, then Brian Hart’s shot was deflected and landed comfortably in the glove of Ryan Nie. It was late in the second period before Dundee played their best hockey of the game, although another powerplay chance for Omar Pacha’s men was not capitalised on.
Hart got his shot on net early in the third period before it dropped out in front as Nie could not hold it but no one was there to tuck it in before Bari McKenzie cleared it down the ice. Lévesque almost got through on a breakaway but a late poke check from Burt robbed him of the chance.
Jimmy Jensen’s pass was intercepted at mid-ice and Tyler Shattock moved into the Dundee end but failed to make the Stars pay for their mistake. Dundee started to keep possession in the Clan end and missed three big chances before turning over possession and Mike Embach received a pass from Shattock before tapping it in at the backdoor.
The home team moved 5-0 ahead at 47:41 and they weren’t finished as Scofield bagged his hat-trick on the fifty-seven-minute mark. Clan’s hat-trick hero Scofield and Stars’ Lévesque were selected as the winners of the ‘Man of the Match’ award.
Both teams meet again in two days, this time in Dundee as Braehead prepare for their first trip to the DIA where Stars have won their last three league games and hope to continue that trend into the new year.
Photo: Al Goold