A game of which players and fans of Medvescak can be proud for the effort, will, hard work, computer level and play withn the structure they have shown, in the end went to the hosts, CSKA Moscow. After a hard fight battle, two mistakes in a span of nine seconds cost the Bears point(s), in spite of having scored first.
“Congrats to CSKA for the win. It was a hard fought game and a competitive one between two teams with similar styles that like to play a fast-paced and physical game. CSKA play a stifling defense with a lot of puck pressure and a lot of back pressure which unabled us to create a lot of open ice. In saying that, we stuck with it, we had a lot of patience and we were able to score that first big goal.
Unfortunately, we let that lead slip away in two shifts. We battled back in the end, but it's hard to score the tying goal when you're short-handed. I'm proud of my boys and how we competed and how we played. It's certainly something that we can continue to build on,” Medvescak's Head Coach Gordie Dwyer commented.
In a excellent and fast first period, Medvescak parried to strong CSKA and set the tone for an interesting and uncertain game in which goalies, Ilya Sorokin and Drew MacIntyre almost took leading roles. One chance after another rolled down the ice in the first 20 minutes of play, but nets remained empty.
Second period started at an easier pace, but it grew as the clock ticked down and Bears found themselves in some premium scoring chances, but Sorokin was ready each time when tested.
Everything that didn't happen in the first 40 minutes of the game, brought excitement in the last 20. First the Bears scored on a power play, courtesy of Edwin Hedberg who had the third rebound shot, and a few minutes later the hosts turned it around.
Jan Mursak was the first one to pass MacIntyre, and nine seconds later Semon Koshelev managed the same. Bears game was only slightly shaken by this, and soon return to its state from the first period and put the final pressure on CSKA. They created chances, but could not capitalize and when two penalties were called on them in the final two and a half minutes of the game, they knew they're facing a mission impossible.
“We were patient through the entire game. Both goalies were great and they won the game after two mistakes in a couple of seconds. We need to take the positives because there were a lot of those tonight, and move on,” Francis Pare, Medvescak forward concluded.
Nikita Pivtsakin confirmed the win in the final minute of the game.
Video source: www.khl.ru
This was the first of three road games in the West. Next stop is in St. Petersburg on Thursday, 27 October. Puck drops at 6:30 PM CEST.
CSKA MOSCOW – KHL MEDVESCAK ZAGREB 3:1 (0:0;0:0;3:1)
KHL, CSKA Ice Palace, Moscow
44:16 0-1 Hedberg (McMillan, Bolduc) PP1
47:50 1-1 Muršak (Denisov, Blažijevskij)
47:59 1-2 Košeljev (Kiselevič, Mamin)
59:25 3-1 Pivcakin (Muršak, Osnovin)
SHOTS ON GOAL: 32 - 30
PENALTIES: 8 min – 22 min
CSKA MOSCOW: Sorokin, Fasth, Telegin, Enlund, Scott, Denisov, Blazhyevsky, Kugrishev, Popov, Petrov, Kutuzov, Kiselevich, Mursak, Nichushkin, Osnovin, Pivtsakin, Sergeyev, Khlopotov, Koshelev, Mamin, Svetlakov, Chmikov
KHL MEDVESCAK ZAGREB: MacIntyre, Gaiduchenko, Genoway, Lessio, Mertl, Parlett, Morrisonn, Hedberg, McMillan, Pare, Krejcik, Bezina, Giroux, Bolduc, Katic, Larkin, Smith, Glumac, Perkovich, Sauve
Photo: CSKA Moscow