MK Lightning’s five game winning streak was finally ended on Sunday at Guildford Flames when they ended well beaten in a 4-1 English Premier League defeat.
It ended a run which began a fortnight before with a 4-3 overtime victory at Peterborough Phantoms and finished with success over the same opposition by an identical scoreline in the extra period at MK Arena on Saturday.
In midweek Lightning saw off Swindon Wildcats in a 5-2 result at the Link Centre.
On Saturday a Bobby Chamberlain powerplay goal 1min 45secs into the extra succession ensured victory and maintained the side’s top position in the league table – a spot they surrendered to Basingstoke Bison after Sunday’s loss.
In a nail-biting encounter at MK Arena visitors who led with a goal by Edgars Bebris - assisted by Craig Scott - on 3mins 35secs. - the game watched by Scott’s father – former MK Kings legend Paddy.
Marko Luomala provided the opportunity for fellow Finn Markku Tahtinen to level the tallies at 12mins 7secs.
There were no further goals until after to midway stage when man of the match, Scott, supplied Robbie Ferrara to beat goalie Jordan Marr at 35mins 8secs.
Lightning took just 1mins 56secs of the third session to come up with the equaliser when Jordan Cownie was the provider for Lewis Hook.
Home fans’ hopes were dealt a blow when Phantoms again went in front with a goal on 51mins 56secs by Cam McGiffin.
But Lightning refused to give in and their man of the match, Hook, scored his second goal of the evening, assisted by Tahtinen, at 57mins 32secs to send the game into overtime.
Twenty-six seconds of the extra period had elapsed when Bebris was penalised for tripping.
Lightning coach Pete Russell called an immediate timeout - and it paid off as Chamberlain, supplied by Jarolin and Leigh Jamieson, bagged the winner at 61mins 45secs.
On Sunday at Guildford a poor second period saw Lightning concede four goals in just over ten minutes. Three games in five days possibly took its toll on Lightning while the older legs of Flames were fresh, having not played since the previous weekend.
It was not until the final seven minutes that the visitors gained consolation when Cownie supplied Leigh Jamieson for a powerplay goal at 53mins 2secs.
The first session was an even affair with the sides trading shots but no goals. That changed in the middle stanza when Erik Piatak supplied Marcus Kristofferson to beat Marr at 24mins 7secs. The gap was extended after 26mins 30secs when Jens Eriksson netted.
Lightning called a timeout to put momentum into their game but it resulted in a series of penalties – Lewis Christie going for holding, Tahtinen receiving two minutes for interference and Chamberlain serving time for high sticks – all within a few minutes.
It was on the Chamberlain penalty that Flames made it 3-0 – Kristofferson bagging his second.
The travellers were still a man down when Towe added the fourth Flames goal 30 seconds later.
Lightning’s solitary goal came after Kevin Phillips was sin binned for interference on 52mins 34secs the visitors finally managed to break through thanks Cownie’s set up for Jamieson.
In midweek Jack Watkins got Lightning off to a dream start with a goal after only 1min 45secs at Swindon.
Towards the end of the period Wildcats’ Aaron Nell was hauled down while clear on goal. Nell took the resulting penalty shot but Marr saved.
Near the end of the period Jordan Cownie was given two plus 10 minutes for checking from behind and on the powerplay Sami Ryhanen scored within 22 seconds of the restart.
Jarolin put the visitors back in front at 34mins 45secs.
In the third period Marko Luomala extended Lightning’s advantage on 43mins 33secs before Blaz Emersic registered at 46mins 16secs.
Seconds later a holding penalty for Lewis Christie saw Tomasz Malasinski score at 48mins 26secs for Wildcats’ second goal.
Wildcats called a timeout at 58mins 23secs - withdrawing goalie Stevie Lyle for the extra skater.
The move backfired with Lightning capitalising for a fifth goal on the empty net by Chamberlain ten seconds later.