Separating the inseparables

11 March 2012, 20:18

Eastern Conference quarterfinal, Game 7
Metallurg Magnitogorsk 2 OT
Barys Astana 1
Metallurg win the series 4-3
For the third game running Metallurg Magnitogorsk found an overtime winner to book its place in the Eastern Conference semifinals. Daniil Markov got the crucial goal early in the extra period to complete a remarkable turn-around from 1-3 down to 4-3 series winner for Magnitka, and break the hearts of brave Barys Astana.

Given the way the series had progressed, it was hardly surprising to see Game 7 go to overtime. The two teams were deadlocked at 3-3 from six games, and the previous two fixtures had been settled after the 60-minute mark. And so it proved: Magnitka struck first when Maxim Sushinsky’s pass picked out an unmarked Sergei Mozyakin to fire home his fourth goal of the play-offs, only for Lukas Kaspar to equalize in the second period after Brandon Bochenski’s shot hit both posts only to bounce clear.

Barys survived almost a minute of a 5 v 3 situation in the second period, and both goaltenders stood up well under pressure in the final session – by the end of the game Vitaly Yeremeyev and Ari Ahonen had shared more than 70 saves between them. But in the final reckoning, it was Magnitka’s extra experience which tipped the balance and put them into a semifinal against Avangard Omsk. The other semifinal will put Traktor Chelyabinsk against Ak Bars Kazan.

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