2017 Kharlamov Cup Playoffs continued on March 19th with two decisive Game 5s in the Western Conference. Both games began with a minute of silence in memory of honorable Russian coach, famous commentator and hockey expert Sergei Gimayev who had passed away on March 18th.
In St. Petersburg SKA-1946 played hosts to Chayka Nizhny Novgorod and it took the home team just 17 seconds to get one past Andrei Sukhanov. Pavel Kukshtel moved the puck to the blue line, Andrei Nesterov took a shot and the red lamp pulsed behind Chayka’s net for the first time. Nizhny Novgorod pulled themselves together and despite numerous SKA-1946 offensive rushes, they responded with very dangerous counter-attacks, one of which led to a goal – Kirill Melyakov put the puck on net from the point and Roman Gorbunov tipped it home from the slot past Konstantin Volkov. Gorbunov scores for Chayka again – 1-1.
In the second period of play the fans weren’t treated to any goals, even though both SKA-1946 and Chayka created good scoring chances. Nizhny Novgorod evened on the shot-clock and gave the best goaltender of the regular season a lot of work to do. ‘The army men’ had two powerplay opportunities but they had nothing to show for it in the end. The teams headed to the dressing-rooms still deadlocked at one.
Early in the third stanza Nizhny Novgorod grabbed the lead. At 45-39 Kirill Melyakov found the back of the net as he scored on a rebound from the right wing. However, Chayka could not hold on to their lead. Two minutes later Alexander Volkov tipped Vladislav Kurbatov’s shot in on a powerplay and just 19 seconds later SKA-1946 took the lead – Timur Sulteyev got the marker. Home team played smart defensively late in regulation, held on to the 1-goal lead and clinched the series to proceed to the 2017 Kharlamov Cup Quarterfinals. They will now meet Almaz Cherepovets.
SКА-1946 St. Petersburg – Chayka Nizhny Novgorod – 3-2 (1-1, 0-0, 2-1)
1-0 – Nesterov (Kukshtel) – 00-17
1-1 – Gorbunov (Melyakov, Smolin) – 12-19
1-2 – Melyakov (Unassisted) – 45-39
2-2 – Volkov (Kurbatov, Moyseyev) – 47-30 PPG
3-2 – Sulteyev (Volodin, Volkov) – 47-49
Goaltenders: Volkov - Sukhanov
Shots on goal: 33-22
Penalty Minutes: 6-28
SKA-1946 St. Petersburg win the series 3-2
Game 5 of the series between Krasnaya Armiya and MHC Dinamo St. Petersburg was held in Moscow and it ended with the same final score. The visiting team opened up the scoring eight minutes into the game. The blue-and-white hit the post and moments later Anton Nazarevich buried the rebound past Krasnaya Armiya goaltender Artyom Korepanov. ‘The army men’ tied the game up three minutes later – Mikhail Byakin got the puck from Pavel Podluboshnov and sniped it home.
Halfway through the second frame Dinamo grabbed the lead again – Nazarevich scored his second of the game. Home team got it back in a hurry once again – Podluboshnov, who had picked up an assist earlier, now found the back of the net himself. Krasnaya Armiya got their first lead of the game late in the period and it was the same line who got the job done again – captain Ivan Silayev let it rip from center ice and caught Kirill Ustimenko off guard. In the very next shift Andrei Kuzmenko improved his team’s lead to two goals. Late in the period Dinamo got a man-advantage and they capitalized on it – Nikita Dynyak brought the blue-and-white back within one.
Early in the final stanza ‘the army men’ enjoyed two tallies. Just 16 seconds in Pavel Karnaukhov got on the scoreboard and at 44-53 Nikita Popugayev extended Krasnaya Armiya’s lead to 6-3. Dinamo battled till the end but the 3-goal margin proved to be insurmountable for them. Krasnaya Armiya win Game 5 of the series 6-3 and proceed to the next round to face Russkie Vityazi Moscow Region.
Krasnaya Armiya Moscow – MHC Dinamo St. Petersburg – 6-3 (1-1, 3-2, 2-0)
0-1 – Nazarevich (Vasiliev, Zelenkov) – 07-41
1-1 – Byakin (Podluboshnov, Silyaev) – 10-40 PPG
1-2 – Nazarevich (Vasiliev, Zelenkov) – 28-23
2-2 – Podluboshnov (Silayev, Byakin) – 31-27
3-2 – Silayev (Podluboshnov) – 38-08
4-2 – Kuzmenko (Unassisted) – 38-14
4-3 – Dynyak (Yelshansky, Zavyalov) – 39-37 PPG
5-3 – Karnaukhov (Kvartalnov, Kuzmenko) – 40-16
6-3 – Popugayev (Mescheryakov) – 44-53
Goaltenders: Korepanov - Ustimenko
Shots on goal: 37-24
Penalty Minutes: 6-10
Krasnaya Armiya Moscow win the series 3-2