The Sheffield Steelkings title celebrations are on hold after the Manchester Mayhem came back from two goals down to win at IceSheffield on Sunday.
The Steelkings got off to a perfect start with two long-range first period snipes from Matt Clarkson but the warning signs were already showing as Karl Nicholson and Anthony Booth both went close for the Mayhem against Bryan Hackworth in the Steelkings goal.
The game was heading towards a scoreless second frame until with a little over a minute left the Steelkings defence was slow to close down Booth inside their zone and he gave Manchester a lifeline into the game.
The third period saw Clarkson sting the glove of Manchester goalie Darren Pomfreit on several occasions but the Mayhem continued to press for an equaliser and Nicholson hit a post on a breakaway.
It was in fact Nicholson who levelled the scores and shortly after Booth’s effort found a way past Hackworth to give the Mayhem a lead with five minutes remaining.
Try as they might the Steelkings were unable to come up with an equaliser. The Steelkings were left wondering how they let the game slip away from them. “It hurt,” said Chairman Jake Oakley. “I don’t know how we let them back into the game, but we need to learn from it, take the horrible feeling we all have now and use it to our advantage whichever way we can.
“Destiny is still in our hands when we go to Peterborough and I know we have the ability to get the point we need!“I would like to thank the crowd who attended our game too. Again the turnout was fantastic and we really appreciate all the support.”
The result leaves Manchester a half a point ahead of the Steelkings in the standings, but having played all of their games. The Steelkings travel to Peterborough on the 24th August, knowing any positive period result sees them crowned British Para Ice Hockey League Champions for the first time.
Man of the Match went tp Peggy Assinck for the Mayhem and Matt Clarkson for the Steelkings.
Gamesheet available HERE