After the 5:4 win in Salzburg on Sunday vs. Red Bull, the Bears tonight continued their winning series. Two games before the playoffs, in the 8th game of EBEL's intermediate round, they beat Innsbruck 5:2 (1:0, 2:1, 2:1) in the Ice Hall of Dom sportova, and climbed to the 4th place among the top 6 teams.
Medveščak come to advantage in the final minute of the first period with a goal by Tero Koskiranta. Andrew Clark equalized in 21st minute, but before the end of the second period Medveščak scored two more goals, through Jozef Balej (32') and Tyler Morley (39').
Innsbruck returned to the game when Michael Yogan scored for 3:2, at the opening of the last period, but Medveščak countered with goals by Garrett Noonan (47') and Mike Aviani (48').
With two new points Medveščak jumped to the 4th place in the standings, now they have 8 points, same as KAC and Innsbruck, who are behind. Red Bull is in the lead with 20 points, Vienna Capitals have one point less, and Linz is 3rd with 18 points.
Let's remind of the competition system in the intermediate round for top 6 teams that secured playoffs directly: the teams play total of 10 games, round-robin home and away; a win in regular time brings 3 points, a win after overtime or shootouts 2 points, and a defeat after overtime or shootouts brings 1 point. After the 10 games, the final ranking is determined, and first 4 teams have home ice advantage. What is interesting is that 3 best teams from the »upper house« of the intermediate round have right to choose their opponents for the first round of playoffs, and the 4th team plays with the remaining team that no one selected.
Medveščak hosts Vienna Capitals in Zagreb on Friday, March 2nd (7.15 pm), this being their last home game of the intermediate round before playoffs. Two days later, on Sunday, the Bears play their last intermediate round game away in Linz.
STATS COMING SOON
Source: EBEL, HRT
Photo: MDVPRess/J.Galoić, Pixsell