After the short All Star break, with two exhibition matches against the Americans (ACHA Selects), the EUHL again fully launched. Team HC Slavia STU hosted the home game versus the reigning champion, the invincible UK Prague. This fact was successfully changed by the Slavists , after winning 5:4 stopping Prague’s graceful ride without a loss in the EUHL.
HK Slávia STU Bratislava – UK Praha 5 : 4 (1:1, 3:1, 1:2)
Goals and assists: 9. Šatka, 24. Vystavil Šimon (Šatka, Goga), 32. Mader (Mičúch, Galko) , 35. Gráčik (Hubek, Kanda), 56. Šatka ( Šimon Vystavil) – 9.Novák, 34. Alexa (Hučko), 46. Gremlica (Bartoš), 47.Novák (Alexa)
Since the beginning of the duel we could see very efficient play on both sides. In the 4th minute a penalty was issued for the home team’s Galko, who was followed to the bench by Gráčik 34 seconds later. Therefore it was a decisive power-play for the visitors. They were not successful in scoring a goal during this advantage and the punishment came soon afterwards. In the 7th minute the home team got in a chance to score and Šatka took the most of this chance, scoring the opening goal. Just a few seconds later the visiting team managed to get away and Novák was driving to the net. The defence had no other choice than to foul him. It was a foul shot afterwards and Novák managed to score one on one. Since the tying score it was an evenly matched game with efficient play from both teams. The STU team was putting pressure during power-plays, they managed a few shots, however no change to the score occurred until the end of the period.
In the beginning of the second period the visiting goalie Vokatý unintentionally fouled a player. The home team of STU had another power-play, and they failed to score again. However a second after the power-play has expired, Šimon Vystavil scored a nice goal and the STU took the lead once more. It was an offensive hockey play on both sides. The goalkeepers of both teams were very successful in keeping the game close, both of them pulling out incredible saves for their teams. The goal came in 32nd minute when Mader hit the puck in the net and Bratislava was up by two goals. Two minutes later, it was a fast break for the visiting Prague team. Outnumbering the defense two to one, Alexa scored a goal in the net, decreasing the lead of the STU to only one goal. Only a few moments later the home team had another chance to increase the lead and they made the most of it. After a penalty for Hučko from Prague, the STU team pushed towards the net, Hubek found Gráčik with a nice pass and the STU players could celebrate again. After the goal it was Hučko receiving a penalty again, this time it was 5 minute major and a penalty until the end of the game. This proved to be very difficult a situation for Prague as they were now playing with only two formations.
In the third period the situation on the ice got very tense. Penalties were issued and it was the home team again on the power-play, but they did not manage to score. On the other hand, Prague was certainly the more efficient team during the power-plays as they managed to score during one just afterwards. A shot on goal by Gremlica found the bottom of the net and the score was close again, 4:3. The visitng team seemed to be pumped up by this goal and just a minute later, Novák scored again, evening the score. This took a lot of pressure out of the minds of the Czech team. The game was very close until in the 56th minute, Šatka scored his second goal. This was the last deciding goal of the game. The visitors could not catch up even when playing without the goalie and STU came on top. The loss proved to be very bitter for the Czech team as it was their first game to lose in the season.
photo : Peter Brichta