Gurkin’s double sets up Sibir for the win
Sibir Novosibirsk 3:2 Metallurg Magnitogorsk (0-0, 2-0, 1-2)
Sibir enjoyed its second victory of the season against Metallurg, while the visitor slipped to a fifth loss in six games. Yefim Gurkin scored twice for the home team as it bounced back from heavy losses at home to Dinamo Minsk (0-6) and Avangard (1-4).
The first period was goalless, despite plenty of enterprising play from both teams. Metallurg had the edge in the opening session but could not get itself on the scoreboard. Early in the second, Gurkin managed to open the scoring with an unusual goal. The defenseman fired in a point shot and went chasing after his own effort. Vasily Koshechkin was uncharacteristically lax in allowing the rebound to get away from him and Gurkin himself recovered the puck to score. Home goalie Anton Krasotkin collected an assist.
That was almost Krasotkin’s last contribution; soon afterwards he suffered an injury and was replaced by Harri Sateri. The Finn was beaten by Sergei Plotnikov, but that effort was whistled off for a high stick. Then came a second goal for Gurkin, this time on the power play.
In the third, Metallurg got the perfect start when Nikolai Prokhorkin pulled a goal back 17 seconds into the action. And when Sergei Mozyakin’s power play goal made it 2-2, there was a sense that the momentum might be swinging Magnitka’s way. However, Juuso Puustinen smashed home a powerful shot midway through the final stanza to restore Sibir’s lead. And that was enough to settle the outcome.