Berdnikov's hat-trick comes as a pleasant gift on coache's birthday
Game Recap: Severstal - Ak Bars.

OCT.6 -- One of the most intriguing games of the season was played last night in Cherepovets between tournament's leaders Kazan's Ak Bars and local Severstal. The home team prevailed in overtime thanks to season's first hat-trick by veteran Sergei Berdnikov.
   Berdnikov's power-play tally with just 23 seconds left to play in OT came as a pleasant gift to Severstal's head coach Sergei Mikhalev, who celebrated his 55th birthday on the night.
   No team looked superior in the opening period, but the visitors managed to get on board with 28 seconds to play. Sergei Zinoviev rushed into Severstal's zone and took a good shot. Viktor Chistov allowed a rebound and Alexei Tertyshny cashed on it.
   Severstal clearly outplayed Ak Bars in the second period taking a one goal lead with Berdnikov scoring twice. First goal came on a redirection of Yuri Kuznetsov's nifty pass. Second, once again with 28 seconds before intermission, on a break-away effort.
   In the third engagement it was Ak Bars turn to dominate on the ice, as the home side took their first shot on Andrei Tsarev's net 13 minutes into the period. However it took visiting team 19 minutes before they managed to get an equalizer. Former LA King and Buffalo Sabre Vladimir Tsyplakov chipped the puck in off the post.
   Late in overtime Berdnikov got the winner while his team had a four-on-three men advantage.
   Thus far Severstal remains the only unbeaten team in RSL this season.

In Sokolniki (Moscow) Sibir outgunned Spartak 6-3. Edmonton Oiler's prospect Alexei Mikhnov was among the best players on the ice registering couple of helpers. Mikhnov co-leads Novosibirsk side in scoring with four points in ten games. NJ Devil's prospect Andrei Postnov had a goal and an assists in loosing cause.

In Omsk, Avangard defeated Metallurg Novokuznetsk 2-0. Metallurg's goalie Vadim Tarasov allowed two goals on 13 shots and was pulled early in the second period. On Sunday Tarasov dressed for Metallurg's farm team and allowed seven goals on 38 shots in a 2:7 loss. It seems that after spending a year as a back up in AHL talented netminder lost his drive.

Other results: Dinamo - Lokomotiv 3-9, SKA - Neftekhimik 0-0, Salavat Yulaev - CSKA 3-2, Molot-Prikamie - Krylia Sovetov 2-1, Lada - Amur 1-0.

-- Max Dostoevsky

(C) RSB