Andy Potts,
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Salavat Yulaev Ufa 2 Dynamo Moscow 1

Salavat Yulaev was in the mood to commemorate the club’s proud history with Friday night’s game marking the 55th anniversary of hockey in Ufa. And Igor Zakharkin’s team brought a win to the party, shrugging off an injury list that left head coach Zakharkin describing his locker room as a department of the local hospital rather than a sporting organization.

With two youngsters, Mikhail Kotlyarevsky and Ruslan Petrishchev, called up from the youth team and the recent signing Denis Parshin still awaiting clearance to play for his new team, Salavat was stretched for numbers despite the return of Linus Omark after a cold.

The main incident of the first period was Yakov Rylov’s hit on Dmitry Maltsev. The officials ruled that the Dynamo man went in too high and expelled him from the game, but Salavat Yulaev failed to convert the five-minute power play that followed. To make matters worse for the host, Martins Karsums opened the scoring for the visitor in the closing moments of the session.

Some much-needed first aid finally arrived in the middle stanza. After plenty of home pressure, Sami Lepisto saw his shot deflect off Ilya Nikulin and beat Alexander Yeryomenko to tie the game. Then Maxim Mayorov rattled home the game winner off a Dmitry Makarov pass in the 53rd minute.

CSKA poops Severstal’s party

Severstal Cherepovets 0 CSKA Moscow 2

There was a similar emphasis on hockey history in Cherepovets, where Severstal was also marking an anniversary with a visit from a Moscow club. However, CSKA was a less obliging guest than Dynamo, and the weekend of celebrations planned to mark the 60th anniversary of the host began with a disappointing result for the class of 2016.

On paper, a 0-2 reverse might not seem all that comprehensive, particularly when it took 28 minutes for CSKA to make the breakthrough in the game. In reality, though, the action flowed one way for most of the game. Despite a scoreless first period, CSKA led the shot-count 12-3 and Severstal only mustered one more effort that went off target in those opening 20 minutes. The middle stanza was similarly one-sided, with Jakub Kovar’s resistance finally broken by Vyacheslav Osnovin.

Only in the third period, with Severstal forced to chase the game, did the balance of play become more even. Even that could not save the home team, though, with Osnovin scoring again in the 53rd minute to put the result beyond doubt. Ilya Sorokin recorded his fourth shut-out of the season, making 18 saves in the game.

450 goals for Moyzakin

Metallurg Magnitogorsk 5 Vityaz Podolsk 4

This game was all about goals – the teams traded nine of them in a lively encounter, and Sergei Mozyakin passed yet another milestone with the 450th league goal of his career.

Mozyakin, Russia’s all-time record scorer, gave his team a 2-1 lead on the power play early in the second period, but was then left staring down the barrel of a defeat against the Western Conference outsider as Vityaz hit back to lead 4-2. Roman Horak, Alexander Nikulin and Maxim Afinogenov gave the visitor a commanding advantage by the 43rd minute.

Danis Zaripov led the fightback, assisting as Jan Kovar made it 3-4 before tying the scores with his eighth goal of the season. Then, inevitably, that man Mozyakin had the final say. His 27th goal of the season, and 451st of his career, decided the issue on 57:51.

Around the league

Dmitry Pestunov scored twice as Traktor downed Lokomotiv 3-1. Pestunov scored on either side of the first intermission to set his team on the way to snapping a three-game losing streak. Yury Petrov added a third in the 42nd minute before Yegor Korshkov got one back for Loko. The Railwaymen have now lost their last three, and despite being fourth in the Western Conference table they find themselves just five points clear of ninth-placed Jokerit.

Two goals from James Wright helped Admiral pilot a course to a 4-1 victory at Barys. Wright cancelled out Kevin Dallmen’s early opener, then got his team’s third in the 28th minute. That was part of a productive second period that also brought goals from Maxim Kazakov and Pavel Makarenko as Admiral sailed to a comfortable win.

Nikita Kamalov gave Amur its third straight win while Ugra slumped to a third successive loss. Kamalov scored in the 46th minute, his first goal of the season, to give Amur a 2-1 verdict. Earlier Tomas Zohorna gave Amur a second-period lead but Konstantin Panov levelled soon afterwards.

Andy Potts,
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