Defending champion Salavat Yulaev served notice that it won’t give up the crown lightly - a 4-1 win over Amur Khabarovsk saw the Ufa team draw level with the early-season hot-shots at the top of the Chernyshov Division. Two goals in three second period minutes put Salavat in command and paved the way for a second win in three days over Amur. Alexander Radulov weighed in with three assists.
Osala the derby hero
Oskar Osala became the hero for one half of Tatarstan after scoring twice to help Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk win its local derby with Ak Bars Kazan. Along with goaltender Tuomas Tarkki, who withstood a late rally from the visitors after Evgeny Medvedev made it a one-goal game late on, Osala was the key man in the 4-3 win. The result snaps Ak Bars’ six-game winning run.
Dynamo toughs it out
For the second game running Dynamo Moscow let slip a 2-0 lead but recovered to win. This time Traktor Chelyabinsk was the victim, despite a quickfire double from Alexander Ryazantsev and Anton Glinkin early in the third. Vyacheslav Kozlov got Dynamo’s winner on 55:47.
Eight in a row
Metallurg Magnitogorsk racked up its eighth successive victory, edging out Vityaz Chekhov 3-2. Goals from Alexei Mikhnov, Maxim Sushinsky and Nikolai Lemtyugov proved sufficient to win the game, although a brave goaltending display from replacement stopper Danila Alistratov gave Vityaz hope until the very end.
Around the league
Alexei Kosourov got the only goal of the post-game shoot-out to give Metallurg Novokuznetsk the verdict after a 2-2 tie at home to Sibir Novosibirsk. Sibir had battled back from 0-2 but could not end a losing streak which now runs to five games.
2012 cannot come quickly enough for Spartak Moscow after the Red-and-Whites suffered yet another defeat. The 3-1 reverse at Severstal Cherepovets was the 12th time Spartak had lost in its last 14 outings - with Alexander Stepanov’s 1+1 leading the charge for Severstal.
Avangard Omsk’s indifferent run continued with a 3-1 defeat at Yugra Khanty-Mansiysk, despite Yury Alexandrov giving the visitors the lead. Three goals in the final period turned the game around, with Sergei Demagin getting the crucial go-ahead goal on 45:11.