SKA smashes Severstal, Dynamo snaps losing streak. September 18 round-up

18 September 2018

Nail Yakupov scored twice as SKA overwhelmed Severstal in Cherepovets. Elsewhere, there was good news for two struggling teams: Dynamo Moscow and Dinamo Minsk got their second wins of the season, defeating Vityaz and Lokomotiv respectively. Ak Bars continues to alternate victories and defeats, winning at Torpedo today after Sunday’s stumble at Barys. The Kazakhs again went the distance but lost to Avangard in a shoot-out after clawing back a 0-3 deficit. And Sibir’s troubles go on – a 1-3 loss in Ufa makes it eight without a win this season.

Versteeg holds nerve to give Avangard the edge

Barys Astana 3 Avangard Omsk 4 SO (0-3, 2-0, 1-0, 0-0, 0-1)

Roman Starchenko extended his scoring streak to 13 games as Barys clawed back a 0-3 deficit – but Avangard held its nerve to snatch a shoot-out win.

The first period could hardly have been better for the visitor. From the moment Ilya Mikheyev scored off the first power play of the game, Avangard was on top. Further scores from Evgeny Medvedev and Sergei Shirokov put the visitor in complete control and ensured that goalie Dominik Hrachovina endured a brief and unhappy first start in the KHL.

With Sergei Kudryavtsev taking over between the piping, Barys began the long road back into the game. Goals from Andre Petersson and Brandon Bochenski late in the second period hauled the host back into contention; Starchenko’s latest tally tied it up midway through the third. But a penalty on Starchenko in overtime halted the home momentum; the game went to a shoot-out and Kris Versteeg got the decisive goal for Avangard.

Ufa adds to Sibir woes

Salavat Yulaev Ufa 3 Sibir Novosibirsk 1 (1-0, 1-1, 1-0)

Alexander Andrievsky’s new charges slipped to an eighth successive loss as Sibir continued its wretched start to the season.

The writing was on the wall for the basement team as early as the 10th minute when Joonas Kemppainen did well to force home the rebound from a Philip Larsen effort to put Salavat Yulaev ahead. Early in the second period, Anton Burdasov doubled the advantage with his fifth of the season, jumping straight into the action as Ufa changed on the fly and rifling a shot from the blue line past Danny Taylor.

Sibir managed a reply: Vladimir Pervushin came out on top in a scrimmage in front of Juha Metsola’s net. But the Finn, back on the ice after injury, was destined to come out with a win from this one. Linus Omark’s late tally, a neat redirect on Alexei Semyonov’s shot, wrapped up a 3-1 margin for Salavat Yulaev; Sibir is the only team yet to gain a point this season. Making matters worse, Finnish forward Jukka Peltola left the game in the first period with a suspected fracture after blocking a shot with his arm.

Big boost for Dynamo

Dynamo Moscow 4 Vityaz Moscow Region 2 (1-1, 3-0, 0-1)

Dynamo’s slow start to the season might be at an end after the Blue-and-Whites finally showed some form at home to Vityaz.

Photo: 18.09.18. KHL Championship 2018-2019. Dynamo (Moscow) – Vityaz (Moscow Region)

The Muscovites’ power play impressed all night, and a flurry of three goals in four second-period minutes turned this game decisively in the host’s favor. Vityaz was punished the first time it took a penalty, with Daniil Tarasov giving Dynamo a fifth-minute lead. The visitor responded quickly, though, and Nikita Komarov got a power play goal of his own against his former club.

The game remained even until the midway point, when penalty trouble undid Vityaz. A 5-on-3 situation saw Dynamo score twice, with Miks Indrasis and Juuso Hietanen finding the net. Back at full strength, the visitor’s woes continued: Ilya Nikulin added a fourth, chasing Joni Ortio from the net as the home crowd finally had something to celebrate.

Vityaz looked for a fightback, and when Miro Aaltonen potted his fourth of the season there were nervous faces around the Megasport Arena. But the loss of Igor Golovkov, ejected from the game after tripping Dmitry Sidlyarov, put a dent in Vityaz’ momentum and further penalty trouble late in the game left the visitor unable to mount an effective charge at the death.

Minsk pulls off a shock at Loko

Lokomotiv Yaroslavl 1 Dinamo Minsk 2 (1-0, 0-2, 0-0)

On paper, this was a home banker. In reality, it turned out to be a coupon wrecker. Dinamo’s difficult start, coupled with Lokomotiv’s impressive form, seemingly pointed to only one outcome – but the Belarusians turned the form book upside down to snap Loko’s five-game winning streak and post a second victory in three games.

That didn’t seem likely when Brandon Kozun put Lokomotiv up midway through the first period, converting a 5-on-3 power play. But new signing Denis Kazionov made an instant impact when he tied the scores after the intermission. The former Metallurg man got the redirect on a Denis Osipov point shot to beat Ilya Konovalov.

The winner came just before the halfway point. Patrick Wiercioch fired in a point shot through traffic and Konovalov was unable to react in time. Lokomotiv piled on the pressure for the rest of the game – the home side had 45 shots on goal in total, and the third-period count was an emphatic 14-3 in favor of the Railwaymen. But Mikhail Karnaukhov came up big for Dinamo and the visitor grabbed a valuable win.

Yakupov, Hersley at the double

Severstal Cherepovets 0 SKA St.Petersburg 5 (0-2, 0-3, 0-0)

Two goals apiece from Nail Yakupov and Patrik Hersley led SKA to a convincing win at Severstal, with Nikita Gusev collecting assisting of four out of five goals.

Photo: 18.09.18. KHL Championship 2018-2019. Severstal (Cherepovets) – SKA (St.Petersburg)

Yakupov, SKA’s high-profile summer signing, had made a modest impact thus far. The one-time hope of the Edmonton Oilers had a goal and an assist in his opening three games; respectable, but hardly eye-opening. Today, though, he started to show what he can offer. His first goal, a power play effort to make it 4-0, was a clinical finish from between the hashmarks after Gusev & Co pulled the Severstal PK all over the ice. His second of the night was a similar affair. Gusev and Pavel Datsyuk pulled the strings and Yakupov’s predatory instincts did the rest.

That set the seal on a comfortable evening for SKA. Patrik Hersley’s second-minute blast on the power play pinballed its way into the net to give the visitor an early advantage. Alexander Dergachyov doubled the lead late in the opening frame and Hersley struck again in similar fashion early in the second. SKA saw a further goal disallowed for goalie interference, while Magnus Hellberg enjoyed his first shut-out for his new club.

Galiyev guides Ak Bars to the win

Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod 2 Ak Bars Kazan 4 (1-2, 0-0, 1-2)

Two goals from Stanislav Galiyev led Ak Bars to victory at Torpedo in a game that remained competitive until the final seconds.

The visitor made a perfect start, taking the lead after just 40 seconds through Artyom Mikheyev. Daniil Ilyin tied it up for Torpedo in the 19thminute, but Galiyev got his first of the game 48 seconds later to restore the Ak Bars advantage.

The middle frame was goalless, and Galiyev made it 3-1 with a power play goal in the 48th minute. The home response was swift, with Andy Miele making it a one-goal game with 10 to play. Ak Bars then saw off more than a minute of 3-on-5 play before sealing the win on Alexei Potapov’s empty-net goal.

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