Fife Flyers two-game winning run came to a sudden halt at Elite League pace-setters Sheffield Steelers after they hit penalty trouble.
Three goals inside five, third-period minutes, all on the power play, ended Fife’s resistance.
Until then, the fired-up Fifers had competed well. Robert Dowd fired the home side ahead after 17 minutes but Craig Peacock levelled just over a minute later.
Anthony DeLuca made it 2-1 for the men from The House of Steel after 37 minutes and the scoreline stayed the same until the second break, then the roof fell in.
Evan Mosey netted on the power play three minutes after the re-start and it was 4-1 when Martin Latal scored again less than two minutes later with Steelers again having a man advantage.
And it was 5-1 when Marc-Olivier Vallerand popped in another power play goal after 49 minutes, Fife’s Jonas Emmerdahl having been called for checking from behind.
He received a five-minute penalty starting at 42 minutes and then a 20-minute penalty for the same offence starting in the 47th minute.
Matthew Carter claimed a power play strike after 55 minutes when Steelers hit penalty trouble but the home side saw the game out in front of 5,626 fans.
Elsewhere, Dundee Stars took Belfast Giants to the wire in the Challenge Cup, battling back three times after going behind to be level at 3-3 at the final whistle with a double from Gabriel Desjardins and a single from Connor Sills, the leveller coming less than 14 minutes from time.
But Giants took the win after Scott Conway netted in a shootout.
RESULTS: Elite League: Sheffield Steelers 5, Fife Flyers 2. Challenge Cup: Belfast Giants 4, Dundee Stars 3 (after shootout)