Third time’s a charm

Third time’s a charm

14 Jan 2018 | Davide Tuniz
 

Pavel Razvadovsky and Maxim Parfeyevets shine in the night of third Continental Cup for Yunost Minsk, now the biggest winner of the plate

 
 
 
 

Yunost Minsk win its third Continental Cup, the second in front of its fans, becoming the biggest winner of the competition with three titles, and 3 second places, putting Belarus next to Switzerland and Slovakia as nations with many successes in the competition, three by Yunost and one by Neman Grodno. All the Yunost titles come under the guidance of coach Mikhail Zakharov. But if the first victory, beating the powerful and multimillionaire Avangard Omsk, was achieved as underdog and the second, winning Red Bulls Salzburg in the Minsk Arena, come as favourite, this third was disputed against a fiery opponent, Nomad Astana, which brought Kazakhstan one step away from the first victory in a club competition after the fiasco of Ertis and Beybarys in the last years.

With rosters almost completed – Yunost is without Russian forward Evgeny Skachov injured – teams cross the sticks in a packed and noisy Chizovka Arena, ready to explode after 3 minutes when Pavel Razvadovsky opens the score with a classy move, deking half defence and goalie Kramar. Nomad reacts with its best player, Nikita Mikhalis, calling Michalkov to a difficult save at minute 10. An unnecessary charge by Sergei Sheleg on Mikhalis gives Nomad a capital double power play, well played by Kazakhs and finishing in the net by Valeri Gurin, reactive after a rebound of Michalkov on Lakiza. The goal marks a superiority of Nomad in the second part of the period, but after the end of period also Yunost gains a double power play, converted by Konstantin Zakharov at 19:47 with a point-blank shot, despite a desperate save by Kramar. The players’ skill makes the difference on the ice: as for the first goal, also the third, scored by Alexei Efimenko at 24:37 is a piece of acting: the forward finds the upper angle of Nomad cage. Kazakh coach Georgi Vereshagin decides to change the goalie right after Efimenko goalie, with Dmitri Malgin in the net for Kramar. Before the siren the decisive moment: Pavel Razvadovsky misses the first shot but manage to send the puck in the net despite the protests of Kazakhs, claiming the puck was grabbed by goalie before the line. Referees allow after the video review. With the game already decided after 40 minutes, the last period is played with less tension and Nomad again shows to be hard to kill: at 41:48 Mikhalis nets a rebound giving some hopes for Kazakhs, buried by a fantastic goal by Maxim Parfeyevets, beating Malgin with a precise and powerful shot.


MVP: Dmitri Michakov - Dmitri Malgin

Awards:

Best goalie: Vladimir Kramar (Nomad Astana)

Best Defender: Mark Matheson (Sheffield Steelers)

Best Forward: Nikita Mikhalis (Nomad Astana)


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