Captain Jonathan Phillips believes Great Britain showed Italy a “little too much respect” in their 6-2 defeat on the final day of the Olympic Pre-Qualifiers in Cortina.
Italy now move onto the Final Qualifiers in Norway as they look to secure a place at the 2018 Winter Olympics.
The game was littered with stoppages and GB took 11 minor penalties during the 60 minutes.
Phillips said: “We lost focus a bit with the penalties.
“I think there were a few which were unfair on us but, at the end of the day, I think we could’ve refocused a bit better.
“I think we gave them just a little too much respect in the first period.
“With our energy and the way we skate, we could’ve gone at them a little bit.
“We were a bit hesitant in that first period. Three goals down we just couldn’t get it back.”
From 4-0 down, goals from Ashley Tait and David Clarke got GB to within two to give Pete Russell’s side some hope.
Phillips continued: “When we got the pucks in deep with our little soft chips, I think we got two guys going.
“We got our forecheck going strong but to be honest, we were in the penalty box too much.”