Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Extraliga Round 39

Eurohockey.com's Petr Polák summarizes Round 39 of the Extraliga season, which featured three big match-ups that were all won by the road teams: Vítkovice in Třinec, Brno in Zlín, and Sparta in a duel of the two teams from Prague at O2 Arena, the home of Slavia. And after beating up on Kladno 8-2 last week, Liberec fell big in Plzeň 10-4.

The Extraliga's largest crowd of the season came to watch the Prague derby
 at O2 Arena on Sunday. Photo:  Pavel Vrtiška, hc-slavia.cz.

Slavia Praha 1 - Sparta Praha 2
Sprata had not beaten Slavia on its home ice for almost four years. Until yesterday. The key to Sparta's victory was the power play: Sparta went 2-for-4, while Slavia went 0-for-3. The game was played in front of the season's largest crowd: 11 284.

Oceláři Třinec 1 - Vítkovice 4
Last season's final series between these teams ended 4-1 in games for Třinec. The Třinec Steelers are the current league champions, but all four of this regular season's meetings with Vítkovice went to the Knights of Ostrava. Even though Třinec's Lukáš Bolf opened the scoring in the 27th minute, nine minutes later it was already 3-1 Víktovice. Bolf has been an untimely scorer for his team in recent weeks; in three of Třinec's last four games he has scored the opening goal, but they have lost them all.

Zlín 2 - Kometa Brno 3 (OT)
During this game the home team was in the lead twice, but in both cases Kometa was able to tie the score. Because it was 2-2 after three periods, the teams had to play overtime. Four minutes into the the extra period, Miroslav Holec scored the game-winner and Brno took two points in the standings.

Plzeň 1929 10 - Bílí Tygři Liberec 4
Liberec skated into this game with a four-game winning streak and coming off a huge 8-2 victory over Kladno, but Plzeň was on an even better roll; they had won 11 game a row and did not want the streak to end yet. Plzeň jumped out to a 4-2 first-period lead and then added five more goals in the second period, while Liberec scored just one. The teams traded goals in the third giving Plzeň 10 goals in a game for the first time in 19 years. The hero of the night was Radek Duda, who scored two goals and three assists, while Petr Nedvěd had two points for Liberec; the two are now tied for the league lead with 44 points.

Rytíři Kladno 3 - České Budějovice 1
Finally, after two weeks of the new year, Kladno won a game. Tomáš Knotek contributed a lot to this victory by socring two goals. České Budějovice was seeking for more luck in their shots with no big effect.

Mladá Boleslav 4 - Karlovy Vary 2
As the last-place team in the league's standings, Mladá Boleslav has had to play a relegation round against the best team of the 1.liga three years in a row. This year, all the players and the management of the club are looking for a change. But before the game against direct rival Karlovy Vary, the club was in the last position on the table again. Fortunately for Mladá Boleslav, the home team won this game and moved ahead of Karlovy Vary.

League Standings

1HC Sparta Praha39216
2HC Plzeň 192939216
3HC ČSOB Pojišťovna Pardubice39193
4HC Moutfield České Budějovice38203
5Bílí Tygři Liberec39159
6PSG Zlín39155
7HC Vítkovice Steel38154
8HC Oceláři Třinec39143
9Rytíři Kladno38152
10HC Kometa Brno38125
11HC Verva Litvínov39117
12HC Slavia Praha40132
13BK Mladá Boleslav40112
14HC Energie Karlovy Vary39112
Leading Scorers

 Player  Club  GP  G  A  Pts  +/-  PIM 
1Duda RadekPlzeň
2Nedvěd PetrLiberec
3Ton PetrSparta
4Koukal PetrPardubice
5Burger JiříVítkovice
6Straka MartinPlzeň
7Tenkrát PetrSparta
8Gulaš MilanČ. Bud.
9Hübl ViktorLitvínov
10Kolář JanPardubice
Standings and statistics are courtesy hokej.cz

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