Varlamov shuts out Belfast; Copenhagen rolls

Oslo 3, Belfast 0 – Semyon Varlamov slammed the door tight on the visiting Cup champion Giants, shutting them out in Oslo with a 35-save performance. It was his third shutout in less than a month. Earlier in the season, Varlamov shut out St. Petersburg and Bratislava on back-to-back nights. The goalie’s play seemed to give his team confidence because Oslo allowed fewer shots in each successive period. Defenseman Matt Irwin’s 5th goal of the year opened the scoring with 3 minutes remaining in the first period and the Outlaws were able to score two more on Belfast’s Jonathan Quick. Oslo’s Tomas Hertl had two assists and he is now tied for the team lead in scoring with Mikhail Grabovski. Both have 19 points in 23 games.

Copenhagen 6, Edinburgh 3 – A good day for the home team was a really lousy one for visiting Edinburgh, which has won just twice in the last 10 games. Goalie Kari Lehtonen played the whole game for the Capitals but after the game he ruled himself out of the next Edinburgh game. The Finn said he simply needs a rest. Lehtonen allowed 6 Copenhagen goals Tuesday, including three by defensemen (Nicklas Hjalmarsson, Slava Voynov and T.J. Brodie). Trident forwards Drew Shore and Josh Holden led everyone with 2 points each. Claude Giroux of Edinburgh had the most shots on goal (6) but the most he could produce was an assist on Rick Nash’s 11th of the season. Martin Thornberg of Edinburgh had an assist, 5 shots and 5 hits.

Berlin 5, Bern 4 – Goalie Jimmy Howard and the Smurfs held off Bern’s late charge to preserve a one-goal lead and leave Switzerland with 2 points. Berlin took a three-goal lead into the first intermission but Bern slowly pecked away at the lead thanks mainly to Andrei Kostitsyn who scored twice in the second period. Derek Dorsett tied the game for the home team in the third period, but Berlin gathered themselves up again and took command. David Krejci delivered a perfect goal-mouth pass to Loui Eriksson for a go-ahead goal and then 45 seconds later, Eriksson said thank you by feeding Krejci a pass that he was able to slide past Mike Smith’s outstretched pad.

St. Petersburg 3, Moscow 2 – Thirty-nine-year-old Mikka Kiprusoff turned in his second good performance in a row as St. Petersburg narrowly won a battle of Russian clubs and took a 2-1 lead in their season series. It was Kiprusoff’s second consecutive start for the Red Stars, who beat London in their last game. After a scoreless first period, it was Moscow that struck first … and second. Steve Bernier and the Bare Bear Brawlers’ fourth line got things started and when Brandon Sutter upped the lead to 2-0 about 8 and a half minutes later, it looked like Moscow had control of the game. But Brent Burns scored for St. Petersburg on a powerplay near the end of the second period and the Red Stars struck twice in the third, getting the game winner from Wayne Simmonds – his 10th of the season – with 4 minutes to play. Moscow’s Rich Peverley only lost one of the 13 faceoffs he took.

Athens 5, Dublin 4 – Many of the 11,766 Dublin fans in attendance seemed to sit in their seats dumbfounded when the final buzzer went. Their Fighting Irish blew a 4-goal lead by giving up 5 Athens goals in the last 32 minutes of the game. When Dublin penalty killer Jakub Petruzalek scored his third of the season to make it 4-0, it was apparent Athens would have to do something pretty special to get back in it. The Greek powerplay worked a little magic to get them on the scoreboard and Athens was able to score a minute later when forward T.J. Oshie crashed the net and took out goalie Brian Elliott while sliding into the net with the puck. The goal was allowed to stand and Elliott stayed in net. In the third period, everything went the Greeks’ way and Kyle Palmieri emerged as the hero, scoring two of their 3 goals in the period, including the game-winner with 1:23 remaining when he finished off a determined play involving linemates Bobby Butler and Dimitrios Kalyvas.

Bratislava 4, London 3 (shootout) – Don forward Jimmie Ericsson scored twice in the first period, but Bratislava answered shortly after each to tie it 2-2 after one period. The second period saw each team score a goal and the third period and overtime were scoreless. Eagle defenseman Patrick Wiercioch scored his second of the year to tie the game 3-3 in the second and he finished the contest off by scoring in the fifth shootout round on London goalie Martin Jones. Both Wiercioch and Jones are EURO rookies. Speaking of rookies, Bratislava’s first goal came on a slapshot by Michael Stone, who leads his team and all rookies in the league in plus-minus at plus 14. The goal was his third of the season.

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