A three point night for captain Milan Bartovič launched HC SLOVAN Bratislava to a vital 4:2 victory in the Kazakh capital against Barys Astana.
Goals: 45. Savčenko (Bochenski), 51. Boyd (Dawes) - 27. Kukumberg (Bartovič, Ölvecký), 42. Miklík (Bartovič, Tabaček), 55. Bližňák (Miklík, Hudáček), 60. Bartovič (Kukumberg, Kytnár)
Shots: 28:20, penalties: 4:6, powerplay goals: 0:1, shorthanded goals: 0:1, attendance: 2 779, officials: Olenin Konstantin, Romasko Jevgenij - Birin Viktor, Sheljanin Sergej
Barys Astana: Poluektov - Savčenko, Litvinenko, Beljakov, Grigorjev, Novopašin, Hutchinson, Mnacjan - Zailauov, Gavrilin, Krasnoslobodcev - Rudenko, Upper, Starčenko - Dawes, Bochenski, Boyd - Spiridonov, Alexandrov, Solarjov, Savenkov
HC SLOVAN Bratislava: Janus - Sigalet, Sersen, Hudáček, Bližňák, Miklík - Mojžíš, Švarný (A), Bartovič (C), Ölvecký, Kukumberg (A) - Ďatelinka, Mihálik, Bakoš, Kytnár, Daňo - Tabaček, Luža Mikúš, Preisinger, Kudrna
HC SLOVAN Bratislava opened the game on the back foot and the home side had the majority of the pressure. In the third minute Janus had to make a great stop, while Nigel Dawes had a great powerplay opportunity for the home side, but the HC SLOVAN netminder was able to make the stop. Preisinger had a good chance HC SLOVAN, surprising Poluektov with a quick shot, but the Barys netminder made the save. Barys had a second powerplay in the first period, but were unable to convert, unable to find the key to beating Janus.
The away side stepped up their game in the second period, and began creating a number of chances. Kudrna and Sigalet both forced saves out of Poluektov, and when in the 27th minute Ölvecký sprung a 2 on 1 chance with Bartovič and Kukumberg, the latter took the puck all the way and fired a snapshot which went top shelf. The home side went to the man advantage straight after that goal, but Janus once again was at his imperious best. In the 36th minute HC SLOVAN’s fourth line was able to force the pressure on Barys once again, with Preisinger going close. The period closed with Barys on the front foot, but Janus making a number of stops, the pick of the bunch being a fine glove save on Brandon Bochenski.
The floodgates opened in the third period as the game turned into a free-flowing attacking spectacle. The home side started the period on the powerplay, but HC SLOVAN would end up scoring a shorthanded goal, with Michel Miklik scoring a wonderful solo goal, firing a backhand shot high into the top corner of the net. However, HC SLOVAN enjoyed the two goal advantage for just four minutes, as Savchenko’s shot got deflected on the way in and left Janus with no chance to stop it. Barys had the momentum and in the 51st minute tied the game thanks to a Dustin Boyd snapshot which Janus couldn’t save. HC SLOVAN were given a powerplay opportunity in the 54th minute, and thanks to a brilliant passing combination, Mário Bližňák worked his way in front of Poluetkov and tapped in a precise Miklik pass. HC SLOVAN managed to hold on until the final minute, as Barys pulled the netminder. Fortunately, Bartovič was able to backhand the puck into the empty net, to give him a goal to go along with his two assists, and give HC SLOVAN Bratislava their second away win in a row.