International Ice Hockey Federation

“Canakhstan” stuns Swiss

“Canakhstan” stuns Swiss

Dawes goals in shootout the difference

Published 14.12.2021 15:38 GMT+2 | Author Andrew Podnieks
“Canakhstan” stuns Swiss
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - MAY 7: Kazakhstan's Roman Savchenko #2 celebrates a second period goal against Switzerland with Dustin Boyd #41, Alexander Lipin #46 and Brandon Bochenski #27 during preliminary round action at the 2016 IIHF Ice Hockey Championship. (Photo by Andre Ringuette/HHOF-IIHF Images)
Nigel Dawes scored twice in the shootout to give Kazakhstan a stunning 3-2 win over Switzerland to start the World Championship for both teams.

Dawes scored in the round-robin portion with a great deke to his right and then in the sudden-death with an equally great deke left to give Kazakhstan three goals to Switzerland's two in the penalty-shot shootout. It was the first win for the Kazakhs in WM history against the Swiss after three losses.

"It's an historic moment for us," goaltender Vitali Kolesnik said jubilantly after the game.

Ironically, Dawes missed a penalty shot in the first period as well.

"I was a little frustrated with my penalty shot in regulation," Dawes admitted. "I kinda rushed it, and I wanted to be more patient in the shootout. He's a big goalie; he takes up a lot of the net, so I wanted to get him moving, and I did that. It was good to kinda redeem myself."

The win spoiled the first game at the World Championship for incoming Swiss coach and former national Patrick Fischer, but the result was a great start for the North American-born forward line of Kazakhstan made up of Canadians Dawes and Dustin Boyd, and American Brandon Bochenski.

The first four players of the shootout all scored and the last two missed, and in the first round of the sudden death Dawes scored again. Goalie Vitali Kolesnik didn't even have to make a save for the win as Lino Martschini, who also scored in the round robin, lost control of the puck and didn't even get a shot.

The Kazakhs got the first great chance of the game midway through the opening period. Dawes was hooked from behind on a clear break and awarded a penalty shot, but he blasted a shot wide with the free shot to keep the game scoreless.

A few minutes later the Swiss scored two quick goals, but only the second counted. Sven Andrighetto ripped a shot over the glove of Vitali Kolesnik at 14:21, but video review showed a teammate in the crease, nullifying the score.

Undaunted, the Swiss continued to press, and 35 seconds later they were awarded with a goal that stood. Raphael Diaz took the puck around the Kazakh net and tried to stuff it in the far side. Kolesnik made the stop, but the puck came right to Samuel Walser who eluded a check from Ilya Lobanov to swat the puck in.

The second period was as entertaining a period of hockey as you are about to see early in a big tournament. Kolesnik was the early star, making several big saves to keep it a 1-0 game, notably on a Swiss power play.

Then, at 10:57, Roman Savchenko tied the game on a goal as bizarre as Vladimir Koat’s against Tommy Salo at the 2002 Olympics. Playing short-handed, the Kazakhs intercepted the puck at their blue line. Savchenko rifled a long shot down the ice that floated like a knuckleball, eluding Reto Berra some 120’ away.

Berra made up for the gaffe a little later, robbing Vadim Krasnoslobodtsev from in close with a right-pad save. 

The Kazakhs stunned Switzerland by taking the lead at 10:30 of the final period during a four-minute power play after a Felicien de Bois high-sticking call. On a nice give-and-go from in close, Yevgeni Rymarev fed captain Roman Starchenko in front, and Starchenko snapped a quick shot over Berra's glove.

Less than two minutes later, though, the Swiss tied the game on a man advantage of their own when Denis Hollenstein poked his own rebound past Kolesnik from a bad angle. It was not the kind of goal to give up at such a critical moment of the game.

That set the stage for overtime and Dawes's heroics in the shootout.

Both teams are right back at it tomorrow. The Kazakhs play Russia in the early game while Switzerland plays Norway in the afternoon.


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