Edinburgh Capitals player/coach Riley Emmerson praised injured forward Paul Zanette, who played his fourth game in as many days in Caps’ thrilling 7-5 win over Sheffield Steelers at Murrayfield last night.
Zanette, who missed the tail-end of the match with a lower body injury, had spent the week in Latvia playing in a four-team tournament with the Italian national team and changed his flight so he could make it back to Edinburgh in time for face-off.
Emmerson said: “Carsen Chubak (netminder) had a hell of a game, and there was some standout performances but the biggest credit must go to Paul Zanette, to fly back from Riga early like he did and play four games in four nights was just phenomenal.
“He is the one of the heart-and-soul guys of this team, we need to get him some physio and get him back as quickly as possible because he makes this team better.”
Edinburgh were thrashed 8-3 at Fife Flyers on Saturday, but extended their home win streak to a club record six games with last night’s victory with Craig McCallum scoring a hat-trick, league top-scorer Ryan Hayes weighing in with a double, and there were also goals for Nate Fleming and Zanette himself, who opened the scoring short-handed just four minutes in.
Emmerson continued: “We have a ton to improve on defensively, that’s 13 goals in two games. We’ve got to fix this because it can’t last.
“I’m pumped for the two points, and Sheffield are a hell of a team but if we didn’t have a stellar goaltender in net I don’t know what the score would have been.
“Credit to the guys who battled hard all night, but we need to improve if we want to be in contention this year.”
Sheffield, who scored through Mathieu Roy (2), Jeff Legue, Tyler Mosienko and Chris Lawrence, trailed 3-0 after 11 minutes and 5-2 with just seconds to go in the second period.
But they mounted a furious fightback in the third, out shooting their hosts 42-23 on the night.
However, they just short, Hayes striking the killer seventh goal, scored into an empty net with just under a minute remaining.
Edinburgh are next in action on Thursday night, travelling to league leaders Belfast Giants who beat Manchester Storm 2-1 last night.