Traktor with a comeback victory over Atlant

First period
The first period was an eventful one, and Traktor looked more focused for the better part of the period. First off Belov and Panov checked Davydov with a couple of shots, but Atlant’s goalie was on point. Shortly after that Atlant earned a chance at power play, but failed to bother Garnett in any way. Middle-period the match’s pace quieted a bit until Belov knocked Rybakov down with a ferocious hit. Traktor was left shorthanded again momentarily, and again visitors did not create anything worthy of mentioning, thanks in no small part to Traktor’s showpiece defensive work. Then the 16th minute came along. First Belov found Kostitsyn with a pass to the far post, but Andrey could not put it away on this exchange, but quickly redeemed himself, converting Kontiola’s pass to 1:0 on the scoreboard. This 1:0 could change several times before the buzzer if it was not for Garnett who saved his net after Rybakov’s shot, and then froze the puck after a scorching hot goal-scoring opportunity, thus keeping Traktor in the lead.

 Second period
It would be safe to say that Traktor did not have an auspicious second period in tonight’s match. It took Atlant three minutes to score twice and pull ahead. First Konstantin Koltsov tied the score after a two-on-two situation; then Lemtyugov put his name on the scoreboard. Traktor got around some three minutes later when Bulis and Belov took shots at Davydov’s goal, but Atlant’s goalie had them well scouted. Traktor then got the power play which was only notable due to Kostitsyn’s active play. Traktor won almost every single power combat on the ice, but still was not able to tie the game. Middle-period it was Chistov who could finally break the goal silence for Traktor, but he missed the net. The most spectacular thing that happened before the buzzer was Katichev’s dazzling hit on Maksim Mayorov.

Third period
Once again, Traktor’s time came around in the third period. Yevgeny Kuznetsov quickly tied the game after having outplayed two Atlant’s defensemen. Several minutes later Kuznetsov had a carbon copy of this moment, but Davydov prevailed on that exchange. Then it was time for Traktor’s signature ‘we-will-do-a-merry-go-round-in-your-zone-but-will-not-take-a-shot-at-your-goal’ shtick; this time it was the third line that was responsible for this. After taking a ride Atlant seized the advantage for a short span of time; Garnett had to showcase all his abilities to keep the score intact. Advantage or not, it was the home team that took the lead late in the third – Antipov found Popov with a side pass, and the latter scored for the fourth time in this season. Traktor then smelt the blood of the wounded animal in Atlant, but for time being Davydov did not budge. Then the unfortunate happened – Yevgeny Kuznetsov left the ice due to an injury. Atlant mustered all the strength to save the matchup; however, credits go to Garnett for keeping the favorable score for Traktor. Several fractions of a second before the buzzer Petri Kontiola tallied an empty-netter and set the game’s final score. 4:2 – Traktor put a stop to a two-match cold streak and vaulted to the top of the Eastern Conference scoreboard.

Stats and details

Traktor (Chelyabinsk) vs. Atlant (Mytishchi, Moscow Oblast) 4:2 (1:0, 0:2, 3:0)

Goals:Kostitsyn (Yakutsenya, Kontiola), 16 (1:0);K. Koltsov (Zherdev), 21 (1:1); Lemtyugov (Engqvist), 23 (1:2);Kuznetsov, 44 (2:2); Popov (Antipov), 53 (3:2); Kontiola (Panov), 60 (4:2).

Traktor (Chelyabinsk)
Quint – Ryabykin (A), Chistov – Bulis – Kuznetsov,
Belov – Vasilchenko, Yakutsenya – Kontiola – Kostitsyn,
Razin – Katichev, Panov (A) – Antipov (C) – Suglobov,
Nesterov, Glinkin – Popov – Karpov.

Atlant (Mytishchi, Moscow Oblast)
Davydov (0:00 - 58:58, 59:59 - 60:00);
Ozoliņš – Rukavishnikov, K. Koltsov (C) – Ignatushkin (A) – Zherdev,
Frögren – Vishnevskiy, Andersson – Rybakov – Glukhov,
Nurislamov – Kosmachev, Lemtyugov – Engqvist (A) – Mikhnov,
Mayorov – Tochitsky – Kablukov.

Penalty Minutes:8 (4+2+2) - 4 (0+4+0).
Shots:32 (7+10+15) - 25 (10+6+9).
Faceoffs Won:25 (5+12+8) - 31 (8+13+10).
Time on Ice:Belov (21:40), Ryabykin (21:21), Kontiola (20:28) - Ozoliņš (27:13), Rukavishnikov (23:41), Vishnevskiy (21:25).
Power Play Goals:0-0.

Referees:Sergey Karabanov (Moscow), Vladislav Kiselev (Ufa).
Linesmen:Konstantin Gordenko, Dmitry Parfenov (both – Ufa).

October 13, 2012. Traktor Arena, Chelyabinsk, Russia. Attendance – 7480.