Capitals take overtime victory as Phoenix take more injuries

Sunday, 2nd December 2007

Edinburgh Capitals 3 – 2 Manchester Phoenix (after overtime)
Phoenix earned a hard-fought and valuable point from their first trip to Edinburgh this season as the bottom-placed Capitals belied their league position with a hard-skating performance.
Phoenix got off to the perfect start with Edinburgh native Tony Hand netting a Joe Tallari centre after just 27 seconds. The home side came back hard and Scott Fankhouser had to be alert to deny Adam Stefishen from point blank range and then deflected a Mark Wires. Edinburgh equalised on the games first powerplay opportunity, Mike Stutzel scoring from the low slot assisted Cingel and Hemingway. When Phoenix went on their first man advantage, Scott Basiuk saw a shot well saved before the Phoenix were forced to defend two shorthanded attacks. The home side went ahead in the 12th minute as Ryan Crane blasted home from the top of the right circle. The Caps were buoyant, skating hard with some slick passing moves and taking the game to the visitors. Phoenix fought back and Capitals goalie JF Perras stonewalled Tony Hand on a breakaway. Phoenix made their second powerplay count, Simon Mangos sweeping home a rebound after Perras failed to hold a shot from Luke Stauffacher in the 19th minute to send the teams to the locker room tied at 2-2 after twenty minutes.
Phoenix killed a Hooking penalty on Sean Starke to begin the second session and Edinburgh responded in kind to kill a penalty against Stefishen. A sweet move by Phoenix saw Perras save well from Starke. Tempers flared on the half hour mark as Brian Passmore took exception to a blind side hit by Doug Christiansen on Tony Hand, throwing a flurry of punches leading to both players drawing 5-minute Fighting majors with the Phoenix player picking up a 2+10 for Instigation. Perras made another excellent save to deny Joe Tallari before more pushing and shoving involving Ennaffati and Hemingway. Phoenix should have regained the lead shortly afterwards when great work by Starke set up Brett Clouthier for a clean shot, but his effort went high and wide. The period ended scoreless thanks to a marvellous save from Fankhouser falling backwards to deny a high backhand shot from Hemingway.
The third period was no less competitive with some excellent hockey from both sides as they pushed for the game-breaking goal. Tony Hand limped from the ice after blocking a shot inside the final ten minutes and Fankhouser again came up trumps to foil Christansen. Brett Clouthier forced a fine glove save from Perras with a rasping shot off the left wing before Edinburgh killed another penalty and a superb glove save again from Fankhouser from Martin Cingel saw the game head into sudden death overtime. And the injury woes for the Phoenix worsened as Scott Basiuk took a puck on the foot and had to be helped off the ice before the home side collected the extra point as player coach Christiansen fired home from the right circle at 61:51.
Phoenix player coach Tony Hand commented, “Any time you play on the road and get a point to take home, you have to be happy and I’m happy tonight. Edinburgh made nonsense of their league position and showed they are capable of playing with any team in the league. We worked hard and fully deserved the point for the tie. We picked up a couple of extra knocks tonight and we’ll just hope guys can come through them to play against Hull tomorrow.”     


Scott Basiuk

Man of the Match - Scott Basiuk
(Image: Richard Murray)

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