About the League
Junior Hockey League media relations department continues the series of jubilee season reviews for every team. Mamonty Yugry enjoyed their best season in franchise history as they made it to the semifinals and won bronze medals of the jubilee season.
Mamonty Yugry Khanty-Mansiysk
1st place in the Eastern Conference, 98 points in 60 games, 205 goals for, 82 goals against
Khanty-Mansiysk enjoyed their second consecutive outstanding regular season. Last year the ‘Mammoths’ got eliminated in the second round of the playoffs and were determined to improve the result. They dominated ever since the beginning of the season and hit a slight slump only in December, when they lost three game in a row. Overall Mamonty Yugry were second in Eastern Conference scoring after Belye Medvedi Chelyabinsk. Dmitry Burlutsky’s men looked exceptionally great from late September to early November when they posted a remarkable 14-game winning streak, ending it only in mid-November as they lost to Irbis Kazan in overtime. Notably, in the previous season Khanty-Mansiysk also had a 14-game winning streak. The team was unstoppable late in the regular season as well. Mamonty Yugry won 11 games in a row and finished on top of the league in goals against as they allowed just 82 goals in 60 games. No other team has allowed less than a hundred goals.
Three forwards were the undeniable leaders of the team – Sergei Golodnyuk, Kirill Kozhevnikov and Denis Latyshevich. Golodnyuk led the team in scoring with 52 points in 48 games, but it was his teammates who were selected for the 2019 JHL Challenge Cup. They were also joined in Nizhnekamsk by Timraly Vakhrutdinov, who had been named the top defenseman of the previous season. Vladimir Gaideik, who had led the team last year in points, had was in the shadow during regular season but went back to being his former self in the playoffs. Burlutsky also had a great goaltending line at his disposal. Ilya Stupin played fewer games than Konstantin Kuzmaul but the 17-year-old netminder looked incredible in them. Both goaltenders led the league in goals against average.
Top-scorer: Sergei Golodnyuk – 52 (33 goals, 19 assists) points
Top goal-scorer: Sergei Golodnyuk – 33 goals
Most assists: Denis Latyshevich – 26 assists
Top defenseman: Artyom Karandeyev – 17 (3 goals, 14 assists) points, plus-26
Starting goaltender: Konstantin Kuzmaul – 38 games, 28 wins, Goals Against Average – 1.30, Save Percentage – 0.940 on average per game
In the 2017-18 season Khanty-Mansiysk edged Irbis Kazan only in Game 5. This year history almost repeated itself as the ‘Mammoths’ faced Belye Medvedi Chelyabinsk in the opening round. Home team struggled in Game 1, while ‘Polar Bears’ came back from a 3-0 deficit. However, Ilya Loza scored the game-winning goal in the second period. Kirill Kozhevnikov and Denis Latyshevich scored a goal each for Mamonty Yugry and that proved to be enough to win Game 2.
The most dramatic game of the series took place in Chelyabinsk. Khanty-Mansiysk shoved the puck into the net past Ilya Gorbunov on one of their counter-attacks in overtime. The visitors were in full celebration mode as they thought they’d clinched the series but the goal was waved off after video review due to goaltender interference. Chelyabinsk rushed down the ice after the play was resumed and Alexander Podkorytov put the puck home with a touchdown. Yegor Stepanov scored the game-winning goal the following day to force the series go back to Khanty-Mansiysk. Mamonty Yugry had to come back from behind in Game 5. They looked solid in the third period of play and scored three goals in a row to finally clinch the series.
Omskie Yastreby also went to Game 5 with Khanty-Mansiysk. The ‘Hawks’ won Game 1 in Khanty-Mansiysk, while Ilya Loza scored the only goal in Game 2. The teams traded wins in Omsk. This time around it was Mamonty Yugry who took the lead first as they won Game 3 by a narrow margin 2-1. Omskie Yastreby won Game 4 the following day by the same final score. It all boiled down to Game 5 again, in which the ‘Hawks’ looked out of gas.
Mamonty yugry faced Loko Yaroslavl in the semifinal round and reigning Kharlamov Cup champions prevailed. Yaroslavl hadn’t lost a single game up to the point in their post-season run, while Dmitry Burlutsky’s men had gone through two 5-game series. Nevertheless, Eastern Conference team still stole one win away from the ‘railway men’. Khanty-Mansiysk won Game 2 – Nikolai Kovalenko scored for Loko but Ivan Ezhov brought it back to even, while Nikita Chusovitin netted the game-winning goal. Loko prevailed twice over the gritty opponent in Yaroslavl and proceeded to Kharlamov Cup Finals, leaving Mamonty Yugry with bronze medals.
Top-scorer: Alexander Belyayev – 11 (5 goals, 6 assists) points
Top goal-scorer: Alexander Belyayev – 5 goals
Most assists: Alexander Belyayev – 6 assists
Top defenseman: Danil Galeyev – 5 (3 goals, 2 assists) points, plus-4
Starting goaltender: Konstantin Kuzmaul – 10 games, 4 wins, Goals Against Average – 2.62, Save Percentage – 0.915 on average per game