Spartak hosted the first Moscow derby of the season when it took on Dynamo. Both teams went with strong rosters. Dynamo rested just three of its key players, Miks Indrasis, Ivan Igumnov and goalie Alexander Yeryomenko, while Igor Polygalov made his debut for the Blue-and-Whites. Spartak put together an import trio of Martins Karsums, Kaspars Daugavins and Robin Hanzl, with Nikita Bespalov in goal.
Dynamo made a bright start without seriously testing Bespalov, but soon fell behind as Spartak converted its first chance of the game. Karsums, a former Dynamo player, opened the scoring in the seventh minute. Within a minute it was 2-0 when another ex-Dynamo man, Andrei Kuteikin, doubled the lead.
For much of the game, Spartak was clearly the better team and Dynamo struggled to create much in front of Bespalov’s net. Only in the third period did the visitor manage to frustrate the home offense but even then, chances at the other end were hard to come by. The closest we came to another goal was late in the game when a breakaway saw Alexander Petunin fire against the Spartak crossbar.
Spartak Moscow 2 Dynamo Moscow 0 (2-0, 0-0, 0-0)
Goals: 1-0 Karsums (Daugavins, Rylov 6:05); 2-0 Kuteikin (Talaluyev 6:41)
Goalies: Bespalov – Kuznetsov
Vladimir Krikunov, head coach, Dynamo
Yes, we lost for the second game running. We’re still getting used to this ice, it’s smaller than the rink we train on. Here, everything happens faster, there’s more contact, your opponent is always right next to you. We warned the guys about it but we’re still getting used to it. We made a couple of bad errors but then we more or less came to terms with it. We didn’t allow any more goals but we couldn’t score for ourselves, unfortunately.
Oleg Znarok, head coach, Spartak
Playing Dynamo was important first of all so we could look at how our lines were shaping up and how our special teams were performing. It seems like we have four separate lines and each of them is capable of scoring. Right now the guys’ physical condition isn’t bad, thanks to our pre-season preparations.
Nikita Bespalov, goalie, Spartak
It was a good game and an important win for us, but it’s only pre-season. We can’t read too much into this. Every team is at a different stage in its preparations: some have had a hard pre-season program, others not so much. If we had done cross training yesterday, like Dynamo did, I don’t think I’d have had a shut-out in today’s game.
Traktor followed up its 1-0 win in Ufa yesterday with another victory over Salavat Yulaev. The home team chose to rest its imports, and also gave captain Grigory Panin the afternoon off. Similarly, Traktor rested its Czech pair of Tomas Hyka and Lukas Sedlak, along with Andrew Calof and first-choice goalie Vasily Demchenko.
Just like 24 hours earlier, the game was competitive but short on goals. Traktor took the lead in the first period and looked to be on the way to another shut-out success. However, a late goal from Vladislav Lukin ended Ufa’s scoreless streak but could not claw the home team back into the game.
Salavat Yulaev Ufa 1 Traktor Chelyabinsk 2 (0-1, 0-0, 1-1)
Goals: 0-1 Glinkin (17:13); 0-2 Malykhin (51:59); 1-2 Lukin (Lisovets 57:40)
Goalies: Kareyev – Fedotov
Admiral continued its engagements in the Czech Republic with a trip to Litvinov, the town that nurtured the talents of Ivan Hlinka and Vladimir Ruzicka. The exhibition game against Verva came after the Sailors finished fourth in the Kusy Memorial Trophy and saw Sergei Svetlov deploy a strong roster against a team that, in recent seasons, has found itself in the lower half of the Czech top flight.
The first two periods were short of action and the teams were tied 1-1 after 40 minutes. The third was more entertaining, with the teams trading five goals before Admiral shaded a 4-3 verdict. The top line led the way, with Martin Bakos and Markus Ljungh making a big impact. However, the defense continues to give Svetlov cause for concern.
Verva Litvinov 3 Admiral Vladivostok 4 (0-1, 1-0, 2-3)
Goals: 0-1 Ljungh (Bakos 15:24 PP); 1-1 Hubl (Lukes, Janosik 39:43); 1-2 Vikharev (Bakos, Ljungh 40:17); 1-3 Lomako (A Streltsov, V Streltsov 40:52); 2-3 Hubl (Gerhat 43:14); 3-3 Janosik (Lukes, Kurbat 50:56 PP); 3-4 V Streltosv (A Streltsov, Ljungh 58:26)
Goalies: Janus – Olkinuora
Nobody expected Dinamo Minsk to play for third place in the Belarusian Cup. However, after joining the competition at the semi-final stage, a surprise defeat against Dinamo Molodechno denied the Bison a place in the final. Instead, it was a bronze-medal playoff against Neman Grodno. Head coach Craig Woodcroft could not hide his disappointment at the result and blamed a lack of adaptation time for the team’s imports, who arrived in Belarus shortly before the game.
There were few changes to the roster for the game against Neman, with Woodcroft wanting to give his team to put right its mistakes. The most notable new face was Alexei Tereshchenko, recently signed on a try-out contract. The three-time World Champion was listed as the 13th forward, but played a role in Minsk’s second goal. He provided an assist as Nikita Feoktistov tied the scores early in the third period.
That goal took the game to overtime, but once again Dinamo came up short. Sergei Malyavko potted the game winner for Neman to leave more awkward questions for Woodcroft as Minsk was left without a medal.
Dinamo Minsk 2 Neman Grodno 3 OT (1-0, 0-2, 1-0, 0-1)
Goals: 1-0 Kovyrshin (Pare, Stepanov 15:43 PP); 1-1 Kisly (Malinovsky, Koromando 21:01 PP); 1-2 Malinovsky (Grishanov 38:29 SH); 2-2 Feoktistov (A Kostitsyn, Tereshchenko 43:22); 2-3 A Malyavko (Stepanov, A Malyavko 62:00)
Goalies: Enroth – Trus