Dyomin gets it done
Dyomin gets it done
Russians get first win in OT over Swiss
Dyomin cut in, fought off the checking of Switzerland's Simon le Coultre, and lifted a shot past goalie Matteo Ritz's stick.
Yaroslav Alexeyev scored for Russia in regulation time, and Nico Hischier replied for Switzerland.
"In the first couple of periods we played a good game, but in the third period we kind of got away from it," said Russian assistant captain Mikhail Sergachyov. "We were passing a lot and shooting. Overall, it was good."
HIschier said: "In OT we had a breakaway and then they went back the other way and scored. OT is 50/50. It’s hard, but we have to keep our heads up and keep going."
Russia's Danil Tarasov got his first start in goal and win of the tournament. Shots on goal favored Russia 28-22.
From a historical angle, there was an extra whiff of intrigue to this game, because last year Switzerland upset Russia 5-0 in the quarter-final, played in the Swiss city of Zug. That was just the second Swiss win over Russia in U18 history, dating back to the first tournament in 1999 (4-1).
This was a different scenario, though, since Russia's team this year consists primarily of U17 players. It was a good recovery after their 8-2 loss to the U.S. to start the tournament.
"Obviously today was a better game," said Sergachyov. "We got experience against the States, and the boys were more confident against Switzerland."
It was a fairly tepid, tactical affair. The best chance in the scoreless first period went to Russia’s Vladimir Kuznetsov, who missed on a breakaway.
At 13:21 of the second period, Alexeyev broke the deadlock with his second goal of the tournament. He took a nice back pass in the neutral zone from Klim Kostin, bore down on Swiss defenceman Colin Gerber, and whipped a high shot over a surprised Ritz’s left shoulder.
The teams traded chances in the last minute of the middle frame. Kostin had a partial break, with Switzerland’s Axel Simic checking him from behind, but Ritz stopped his backhand deke. Simic put one off the post, and then Russia’s Mikhail Bitsadze missed an open net just before the siren.
Neither team was effective with the man advantage. The Russians had a good chance to go up by two when they went to the power play after Switzerland's Yannick Lerch ran Dmitri Zaitsev into the boards from behind at 6:44 of the third period. But they couldn't finish.
Switzerland finally tied it up with 10:53 left in regulation. Hischier took his time in the right faceoff circle before unleashing a wrister that eluded Tarasov high on the stick side, as Dmitri Samorukov attempted to pokecheck him in vain.
"I got a pass from Marco Miranda and I skated," said Hischier. "At first I wanted to make a play, but then I had a good scoring chance, so I shot."
The 1999-born Hischier, who played 15 NLA games with SC Bern this season, is considered one of his country's brightest forward prospects in years.
With under five minutes left in the third, Ivan Chekhovich deked his way past Swiss blueliner Elia Riva, but couldn't fool Ritz with his backhand attempt.
Showing how closely the hockey world is interconnected, Swiss forward Philipp Kurashev is the son of former Soviet U20/U18 national team player Konstantin Kurashev, who emigrated to Switzerland as a coach in the 1990’s.
Russia takes on Latvia on Monday, while Switzerland battles Sweden.
"Next game, we’re going to be ready and we’re going to win, I’m pretty sure," said Sergachyov.
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