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SWINDON WILDCATS: Moore delighted with tough win against Sheffield
SHANE Moore was relieved that Swindon got through a tightly-contested EPL clash with Sheffield on Saturday.
Wildcats held an early 3-1 lead in the road game but were pegged back to 3-3, eventually triumphing 5-3 as the match went to the wire.
And D-man Moore said: “For me good teams find a way to win. We came out in the first period pretty flat but managed to go a couple of goals up.
“Second period they came out a lot harder and we still found ourselves a bit flat, but managed a bit of damage limitation to keep it to 3-3.
“In the third period we came out and had a reason to go for it. Good teams find a way to win and that’s what we did.
“Sheffield have made a lot of changes and have a lot of top-quality Brits, but fortunately for us we were the better team and I think that showed when we started working hard for each other.”
Sheffield were first to strike at 2.20 when Andrew Hirst followed up his initial effort to somehow find a gap past netminder Dean Skinns.
However, 15 seconds later Swindon were level when Nicky Watt scored an almost carbon copy of the opener.
Shortly after the visitors went in front for the first time, Jonas Hoog poking to Tomas Fojtik on the stretch and the Czech D-man picked out Aaron Nell on the diagonal at the far post, who applied the simple finish (5.14).
Hoog missed a one-on-one to stretch the lead further, before Danny Wood fired a warning at the other end when his shot crashed against the bar.
With the period seemingly slowing to a close, Wildcats gave themselves a huge boost with a superb three-on-two breakout goal at 18.59.
Hoog slipped into the path of skipper Nell, just out of reach of the covering defenceman, and the skipper laid the puck on a plate for Matias Perkkio to tap in.
In the second period, the Steeldogs got off on the right foot with a goal at 23.35 that was alarmingly simple, with Pavel Gomeniuk allowed to skate in unchallenged from the blue-line and shoot low across Skinns.
Cats were on their first powerplay of the night when before an attacking face-off, Hoog was sent to the box for 10 minutes for misconduct, a decision vigorously contested by Nell.
And at 35.20, Sheffield sent the home support into raptures as they pulled themselves level, Lubomir Korhon forcing in the rebound after Wood’s shot was repelled by Skinns.
The Steeldogs killed a Cats powerplay at the start of period three but seconds later Watt teed up the recently-returned Hoog to restore the away lead from close range (46.25).
The visitors’ cause was greatly helped by Sheffield taking penalties, but nevertheless Ben Morgan had a late chance to make it 4-4, which was deflected to safety.
With Flavell pulled, Swindon defenceman Jan Melichar broke out and shot in off the post from the defensive blue-line at 59.58 to make sure of two points.