Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Třinec knocks off Litvínov, Liberec and Slavia go to game 7

The semifinal picture in the Czech Extraliga got a little bit clearer on Monday night, as now three of the four teams are set. The one remaining spot will be decided in a seventh game.

Oceláři Třinec beat Benzina Litvínov 4-1 to become the first road team to win in the series, and simultaneously wrapped up the series 4 games to 2. After they allowed Litvínov to even the series with two wins on home ice, the regular season champions showed what they were made of with two convincing victories to advance to the semifinals.

"Even when we took the first two games, we weren't totally in top form. There was still a lot of tension on the team," explained Třinec coach Pavel Marek. "The games here in Litvinov opened our eyes, but fortunately we woke up at home. In today's game, we went with it, that we are here to grab it at all costs, not to struggle for everything. The series is over, I would like to thank my team, how they came to play today."

Tomáš Vak scores the shootout winner to force game 7.
Photo: Petr Zbranek,
Meanwhile, after trailing in the series 3-1, Bílí Tygři Liberec has battled back to force a seventh game against Slavia Praha. They managed with a 2-0 win at home on Saturday followed by a 3-2 shootout victory in Prague on Monday. Petr Nedvěd and Tomáš Vak both scored for Liberec in the shootout, while Tomáš Vošvrda stopped both shots he faced in the shootout. Vošvrda has won 2 games for Liberec this series, including a shutout, after taking over from Marek Pinc.

Wednesday's game begins at 18:10 and will be televised by ČT4 and webcast at

If Liberec wins, they will open the semifinals at home on Friday and Saturday against Vítkovice, while Pardubice would play in Třinec on Saturday and Sunday. If Slavia manages to bounce back from back-to-back losses to win on the road, they would open in Třinec on Monday, while Pardubice would visit Vítkovice on Saturday.

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