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HIFK Evens Series with OT Win, DEL Quarterfinals Begin

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SM-Liiga (Finland)

HIFK 3, Jokerit 2 (OT):  Knowing the importance of this Game 4, HIFK came out flying in this one, scoring first and outshooting Jokerit on their home ice badly.  However, Jan Lasak kept Jokerit in it, and allowed Janne Lahti to score the go ahead goal with 4:16 to play.  With the goalie pulled, Toni Söderholm tied the game for HIFK with 28 seconds left.  Kimmo Kuhta scored on a breakaway 5:48 into extra time to even the series.  Series tied 2-2.

JYP 4, Ilves 2:  Top ranked JYP from Jyvaskyla really weren't challenged by Ilves, who finished 10th in the regular season and won the qualifying round.  Juha-Pekka Hytönen and Ossi Louhivaara had a goal and an assist each to complete the sweep.  JYP wins series 4-0. 

Lukko 5, KalPa 2:  This one was a bit strange.  After an even first period that saw the score tied at 1, KalPa completely dominated the second period, outhsooting Lukko 11-1 but not able to beat Mika Noronen to take the lead.  At 11:05 of the 3rd, Kurtis McLean gave Lukko the lead, and 3:59 later Pettru Lindgren scored shorthanded to build a two goal lead.  With 4:07 to play, KalPa pulled Ari Ahonen for the extra attacker, and it backfired as Lukko took a three goal lead.  In the end, Kurtis McLean had two goals in the 5-2 win.  Series tied 2-2.

Ässät 5, Blues 1:  Tommi Huhtala had two goals to help Pori avoid being swept.  Aki Uusikartano had three assists and Tuomas Santavuori had two helpers, while Eero Kilpeläinen made 23 saves.  And, after being benched for Game 3, potential 2011 first round draft pick scored his first goal of the series.  Blues lead series 3-1.

Thursday's Game (Liigakarstina):  Vaasan Sport @ Lahti Pelicans (5:30 PM CET/12:30 PM EST, Pelicans lead league qualification series 2-0).

Kontinental Hockey League (Russia)

Atlant Moscow Oblast 6, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl 1:  Sergei Mozyakin had a goal and two assists, Ivan Nepryayev scored twice and veteran Oleg Petrov had two points as the visitors from Mytischi shocked the top seed in front of a sellout crowd of 9046 in Yaroslavl.  This game was all Atlant:  they outshot Lokomotiv 32-18, built up a three goal lead, and when Lokomotiv scored, they responded before the end of the second period to retake the three goal lead and put the game out of reach.  Atlant leads series 1-0. 

Thursday's Game:  Metallurg Magnitogorsk @ Salavat Yulaev Ufa (3:00 PM CET/10:00 PM EST, Game 1 of Eastern Conference Final).

Deutsche Eishockey Liga (Germany)

Adler Mannheim 7, DEG Metro Stars 2:  Michael Glumac got a hat trick as the visiting team blew the game wide open in the second period, chasing Jean-Sebastien Aubin to take the series opener.  All of the series in the DEL from now on are only Best of 5 series, so getting an early road win is that much more important.  Niko Dimotrakos had a goal and two assists while defenseman Sven Butenschon contributed two assists and finished a +3.  Mannheim leads series 1-0. 

Krefeld Pinguine 6, Hannover Scorpions 4:  Krefeld dominated this game, scoring four goals in the first period and outshot Hannover 27-8 through the first two periods in building a 5-2 lead.  Charlie Stephens scored twice for the Penguins, while former Norwegian national team cult hero Tore Vikingstad had two goals and an assist for the 80s metal enthusiasts.  Krefeld leads series 1-0.

Eisbären Berlin 5, ERC Ingolstadt 3:  Berlin fell behind 3-1 in the first period, but dominated the rest of the way.  The Polar Bears were lead by Travis James Mulock's two goal, one assist performance as well as Stefan Ustorf's one goal and three assists.  14,000 fans went home happy as Berlin took the early series lead.  Berlin leads series 1-0.

Grizzly Adams Wolfsburg 4, Kölner Haie 1:  In a penalty filled game, Wolfsburg dominated on the power play, erasing an early deficit with four PPGs.  Tyler Haskins and John Laliberte has one goal and one assist each while Jochen Reimer made 26 saves.  Wolfsburg leads series 1-0.

Tipsport Extraliga (Czech Republic)

HC Viktovice Steel 3, HC Eaton Pardubice 0:  Goals from Rudolf Huna, Petr Vrana, and Viktor Ujcik in the second period were all Viktovice needed to answer Pardubice's road win in Game 2 with one of their own.  Roman Malek made 34 saves for his second shutout of the series in front of 10,050 hostile fans.  Viktovice leads series 2-1.

Thursday's Game:  Viktovice @ Pardubice, Game 4 (6:10 PM CET/1:10 PM EST).

Kvalserien to Elitserien (Sweden)

Södertälje 3, Örebrö 2 (OT):  Mattias Carlsson scored 1:43 into overtime as Södertälje continued to remain perfect in the qualification round (2-2-0-0).  Örebrö couldn't hold onto an early 2-0 lead and remain winless (0-0-2-2), so they have to get hot pretty quickly with six rounds to go.

Rögle 5, Mora 2:  Rögle got goals from five different players in this home win, improving their record to 1-1-0-2, currently in fourth place.  Mora has been terrible, losing every game so far by at least 3 goals, as they look to be returning to the Allsvenskan in 2011-12.

MODO 1, Växjö 0 (OT):  Niklas Sundstrom scored the only goal in overtime, but this is still a good result for Växjö, who have earned points in every game so far as they are currently tied for the lead with Södertälje with 10 points (3-0-1-0).  They'll have to play MODO once more, but it'll be on home ice.  MODO sits in 3rd place right now at 2-0-2-0.

Thursday's Elitserien Games:  Färjestad @ AIK Stockholm (6:50 PM CET/1:50 PM EST, Färjestad leads series 1-0); Skellefteå @ Luleå (6:40 PM CET/1:40 PM EST, Luleå leads series 1-0).

IIHF World U18 Championships Division 2A (Romania)

Wednesday's Scores:  Croatia 6, Estonia 1; Austria 21, New Zealand 0; Romania 6, Serbia 1.

Yeah, that Austria-New Zealand score is pretty bad.  To be honest, Austria should probably be at the Division 1 level while New Zealand did well to win Division 3.  New Zealand will be relegated while Austria and Romania will play for promotion on Friday.  No games on Thursday.

National League A

Thursday's Games:  SC Bern @ Kloten Flyers (8:15 PM CET/2:15 PM EST, Flyers leads series 3-1); Ambri-Piotta @ Rapperswil Lakers (8:15 PM CET/2:15 PM EST, Play-out series tied 2-2).

Slovnaft Extraliga (Slovakia)

Thursday's Game:  HK Poprad @ HC 05 Banská Bystrica (6:00 PM CET/1:00 PM EST, Poprad leads series 3-2).

Ontario Hockey League (Canada/USA)

Thursday's Games:  Belleville @ Missisauga (7:30 PM EST); Brampton @ Niagara (7:00 PM EST); Kingston @ Oshawa (7:05 PM EST); Erie @ Windsor (7:05 PM EST).  These are the first games of the OHL Conference Quarterfinals (First Round).

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (Canada/USA)

Thursday's Game:  Halifax @ Montreal (7:05 PM EST).  This is Game 1 of the QMJHL First Round (1/8 Final).