RUSSIA TURNS IN ‘SPECIAL’ PERFORMANCE FOR WIN OVER CANADA WEST
Russia survived a spirited third period Canada West comeback, when Evgeny Grachev stole the puck at the blue line and sent a hard wrist shot past goaltender Bradley Eidsness from the slot for game-winning goal, giving Russia a 4-2 win, and an automatic berth in the semi-finals on Saturday.
For two periods, Russia’s special teams were the difference, as they scoring twice on power plays and killing off a total of 12 consecutive penalties, taking a 2-0 lead into the third period.
Russia’s power play was successful on it’s first two chances, taking a 2-0 lead through two periods. Forward Nikita Filatov opened the scoring at 15:50, beating Eidsness with a quick shot from the side of the net as Russia buzzed around the Canadian keeper.
Then, at 17:49 of the middle frame, with Canadian alternate captain Damon Kipp in the penalty box, defenceman Igor Golovkov found a wide-open Dmitri Kugryshev to the side of the net, and Eidsness had no chance to get across in time.
Canada West’s Derek Lee (North Vancouver, BC/ Salmon Arm, BCHL) made a game of it with an early goal in the third period, splitting the defence and sliding his own rebound under Danila Alsitratov, much to the delight of the near capacity crowd at the Cominco Arena in Trail.
At 15:08, Chad Ziegler (Spruce Grove, AB/ Drayton Valley, AJHL), a late roster addition due to injury, sent the crowd into a frenzy, as Canada finally cashed in on a power play, evening the score at 2-2. But that only set things up for Grachev’s heroics, putting a sudden end to Canada West’s valiant comeback. Sergey Ostapchuk added an empty net goal to make the final 4-2 Russia.
Both quarter-finals are now set for Thursday where berths in the semi-finals are at stake.
|Arena||Cominco Arena||City, Country||Trail, B.C.|
|Month / Day / Year||11/07/2007||Time||07:30 PM PT|
|Canada West (CAN W)||0||0||2||2|
|Canada West||1 Bradley Eidsness||On 1/00:00||Off 3/20:00|
|Russia||1 Danila Alistratov||On 1/00:00||Off 3/20:00|
|Shots on Goal||1||2||3||Total|
|Player of the Game|
|Canada West||20 Mike Connolly|
|Russia||1 Danila Alistratov|