Up against Khumo Tashkent, the VHL team that stunned Torpedo two days ago, Dynamo was aware that it could take nothing for granted. And the Blue-and-Whites produced a clinical display to take a 4-1 victory and top the group despite resting several leading players. The Uzbeks, meanwhile, went with pretty much the same roster for the third game running.
Unlike Torpedo, Dynamo was able to take control of this game with two unanswered goals in the first period. Maxim Afinogenov converted an early penalty shot before Dmitry Ogurtsov doubled the advantage. However, Khumo got back into the game in middle frame when Denis Masharov pounced on a defensive error to halve the deficit. It wasn’t until deep into the third period that the KHL team made the game safe with goals from Dmitry Moiseyev and Ivan Muranov.
Dynamo Moscow 4 Khumo Tashkent 1 (2-0, 0-1, 2-0)
Goals: 1-0 Afinogenov (3:49 penalty shot); 2-0 Ogurtsov (Volkov, Yefremov 17:32); 2-1 Mosharov (Pepelyayev, Yerokhin 34:28); 3-1 Moiseyev (Yefremov 57:22); 4-1 Muranov (Mikhailov, Pankratov 59:58 empty net)
Goalies: Bocharov (Zherenko) – Smiryagin
Dmitry Ogurtsov, defenseman, Dynamo Moscow
Playing Khumo wasn’t all that different from playing the KHL teams here. The Tashkent organization has recruited a lot of skilled guys who have played at this level before. It wasn’t easy, but we got through it. We managed to score our goals and get the result.
It would have been easier if we’d had more of our top players. Shipachyov is Shipachyov. But it’s good that other guys stepped up to the plate and got the goals for us. It’s a bit early for me to assess my own game. The season will show me where I’m at. Right now I just need to prove myself because nobody is guaranteed a place on the team. Of course it was nice to score here, but that’s nothing compared with getting goals during the season.
The evening game between the host and Dinamo Minsk was eagerly awaited by home fans. Even though it’s only pre-season, the loss against Khumo hurt everyone associated with the club and this was a chance to put things right. Head coach David Nemirovsky kept his word and named a strong roster for a game that his team had to win to secure a place in the final.
A fired up home team delivered a powerful start, seeking to banish memories of that last outing. Jordan Schroeder and Damir Zhafyarov opened a 2-0 first-period lead, but Torpedo could not kill the game off. Dinamo responded in the second period with Ilya Litvinov’s power play goal halving the deficit.
It got worse for the host at the start of the third when Andrei Kostitsyn tied the scores, but Torpedo responded strongly with four goals to post a 6-2 verdict. Zhafyarov and Schroeder both added to their first period tallies, with Mikhail Varnakov also on the mark.
That left the teams dead level in the group standings so a shoot-out was needed to determine who took second place and went to the final. Torpedo won that series and advances to Sunday’s showdown.
Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod 6 Dinamo Minsk 2 (2-0, 0-1, 4-1)
Goals: 1-0 Schroeder (Shenfeld, Varfolomeyev 6:59); 2-0 Zhafyarov (Alyayev, Howden 16:09); 1-2 Litvinov (Kostitsyn, Parfeyevets 20:35 PP); 2-2 Kostitsyn (Parfeyevets 43:49); 3-2 Varnakov (Ilyin, Orlov 49:11); 4-2 Zhafyarov (Shenfeld, Schroeder 53:11); 5-2 Shenfeld (Barantsev 54:26 PP); 6-2 Schroeder (56:47 SH)
Goalies: Tikhomirov - Osipkov