Two goals from David Rundblad saved SKA from defeat at Admiral in the only KHL game of the day. In the Spengler Cup there was disappointment for Metallurg with a 1-3 loss against Nuremberg Ice Tigers.
SKA wrapped up its 2018 program with another victory – but it was anything but easy away to the KHL’s lowest ranked team.
Admiral, buoyed by Thursday’s win at home to Vityaz, made a good start and rattled its high-flying opponent with two unanswered goals in the first period. Yury Kozlovsky’s power play goal got things started in the seventh minute and, two minutes later, Alexander Streltsov doubled the lead.
Subsequently, SKA picked up the pace. In the second period the visitor limited Admiral to just one shot on goal, while Nikita Serebryakov made 14 saves in that session alone to preserve his team’s two-goal cushion.
It wasn’t until the last 10 minutes that the visitor finally found a way past Serebryakov, with Swedish defenseman David Rundblad scoring twice to rescue the game. The first came on the power play and was awarded after a video review confirmed there was no kicking motion on the play. Three minutes later Rundblad struck again to tie it up at 2-2. The pressure on the home net remained intense, but Admiral held out until the hooter to claim a point for the tie. In overtime, though, Nail Yakupov popped up to score his second game-winning goal in successive games and enable the visitor to start its New Year celebrations early.
Metallurg Magnitogorsk 1 Nuremberg Ice Tigers 3 (0-1, 1-2, 0-0)
Metallurg suffered a 3-1 loss in its Spengler Cup quarter-final in Davos. With a below-strength roster, missing the likes of Sergei Mozyakin and Vasily Koshechkin, the Russian team fell behind early on to a goal from Olympic Silver medalist Patrick Reimer.
Nikolai Kulemin tied the scores early in the second period but the Germans responded with two quick goals from Brandon Buck and Leonard Pferdel to win the game and book a semifinal match-up against Canada tomorrow.