Devils edge out Giants in close battle
Photo: David Williams
Cardiff moved to within two points of leaders Guildford, with two games in hand, thanks to a two-goal win against fourth-placed Belfast at a sold out Ice Arena Wales.
Ben Davies had a couple of early chances for the hosts as the game started with an excellent pace. The Giants began to put pressure on the Devils' net towards the end of the period, and after not scoring on a man advantage they made their offensive zone time count with JJ Piccinich's inch-perfect shot through a screen which gave Mac Carruth no chance at 18:41.
A poor penalty taken by Sam Ruopp gave Cardiff a chance to equalise that they didn't waste - Brodie Reid scoring fro, a tight angle at 19:24 after an excellent fake and pass from Justin Crandall.
Period two had chances for both teams, although the was the Giants who had the clearer-cut chances, forcing Carruth into several excellent saves. With Jeff Baum binned for a hook on the on-rushing Sam Duggan, Brandon McNally slotted in at the far post to put the Devils ahead. Jordan Boucher had an excellent chance to tie things up as the clock ticked down but somehow didn't find the back of Carruth's net.
The Giants push for an equaliser was rewarded at 51:47 with Piccanich's determination paying off, but when he was called for interference for a big hit off the puck in his own zone the Devils set to work again. McNally netted his second of the night to put the Devils back ahead with 5:04 to play, with Trevor Cox rounding off the win with an empty netter at 58:57.