Saint Petersburg (17:00)
Nizhny Novgorod (18:00)
Saint Petersburg (19:30)
(Severstal leads the series 2-1)
Dynamo hauled itself back into contention in this series with victory on the road in Cherepovets. After dropping two games in Moscow, the Blue-and-Whites needed to tidy up much of its game – particularly a defense that allowed 10 goals in those opening two encounters.
Part of the turnaround saw Alexander Yeryomenko preferred to Ivan Bocharov in goal. But there was also a change in attitude: going forward, the brakes came off and Dynamo roared into life from the start. The visitor dominated the first period, outshooting Severstal 13-3, but could not find a way to open the scoring.
The opening goal came midway through the second period. Dynamo got on the power play when Makar Khabarov sat out a boarding minor and put the puck in the net twice in that time. The first effort, from Oscar Lindberg, was ruled out after a bench challenge for a high stick. The only question posed by the second goal, though, was why Stanislav Galiyev was left undisturbed for so long after receiving a pass from Slava Voynov. The Severstal defense failed to close down his shooting lanes and Galiyev took advantage to score his second of the series.
Severstal, though, was posing more of an offensive threat now and parlayed that into a tying goal early in the third. A power play saw Kirill Pilipenko exchange passes with Jakob Stenqvist before shooting home against his former club.
However, the home team’s hopes took an immediate blow as Eric O’Dell restored Dynamo’s advantage 65 seconds later. Dmitry Rashevsky steered Voynov’s clearance into his team-mate’s path but there was still plenty for O’Dell to do as he emerged from between two opponents to slide the puck past Vladislav Podyapolsky. To make matters worse for Severstal, Andrei Churkin had to be helped from ice after slamming into the boards as he battled to get back and challenge the Canadian.
With 10 minutes left, Dynamo extended its lead. The teams were playing four-on-four and Lindberg’s move through the center enabled him to put Vladislav Yefremov into space in the Severstal zone. The Dynamo forward got up close with Podyapolsky and outwitted the goalie to make it 3-1.
The Steelmen immediately had a power play chance but could not take advantage of Andrei Pedan’s foul. Then, late in the game, Adam Liska’s boarding penalty slowed the momentum at a crucial moment for Andrei Razin’s team. With two minutes to play, Podyapolsky came to the bench but the man advantage was not enough to get Severstal back into the game. Yeryomenko backstopped Dynamo’s first victory in this year’s playoffs to reinvigorate this series.