Munich, Germany - The 5th-seeded Kölner Haie came within four minutes of the 2006 DEL Finals Sunday. But the 3rd-seeded Düsseldorfer EG Metro Stars turned the game around, with three late power-play goals to move on to a showdown with defending German champion Berlin Eisbären.
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Tore Vikingstad led the way with a pair of goals, including the game-winner on the power-play with 2:55 left, as the DEG Metro Stars rallied from a 3-2 deficit to win Game 5 5-3 at home.
Winning goaltender Andrei Trefilov recorded 20 saves on the night while Cologne's Thomas Greiss stopped 32 of the 37 shots he faced.
An apparent powerplay goal from Craig Johnson was taken off the boards six minutes into the contest as his stick was over the crossbar when he re-directed in a point shot from Alexander Sulzer.
But Johnson and Sulzer teamed up again midway through the period. With Cologne's Ivan Ciernik in the sin bin, Johnson provided a perfect screen in front of the net as Sulzer blasted a high slapshot from center point over Greiss' glove hand to give the Metro Stars a 1-0 lead at the 10:30-mark.
Cologne tied the game with just over a minute left in the opening period when Stars netminder Trefilov mishandled a knuckling bad-angle shot by Philipp Gogulla from the left boards.
With time running out in the first, Tore Vikingstad knocked home a behind-the-net feed from Klaus Kathan from the doorstep to give Düsseldorf a 2-1 lead at the first intermission.
Things really got going in the middle frame. There were quality scoring opportunities on both ends. Düsseldorf’s Andy Schneider was stoned twice by Haie netminder Greiss on short-handed breakaways. The Haie evened the score at 2-2 when Jeremy Adduono struck on the power-play midway through the second period. Cologne could have taken the lead but Bill Lindsay, the match winner of Game 4, missed the net after a fine solo effort. Then the Haie caught a big break when a shot from Stars defender Jeff Tory bounced off the post on the man advantage.
The Haie shocked the Metro Stars when they took the lead for the first time, 3-2, on a turnaround shot from Ivan Ciernik at the 8:43-mark of the final period.
Things started heating up in the final six minutes. With the Haie still nursing a one-goal lead, defenseman Lasse Kopitz was assessed a delay-of-game penalty. A minute later, Eduard Lewandowski's high stick hit Düsseldorf's Patrick Reimer right in the face. He got a major plus game misconduct.
The ensuing 5-on-3 advantage was not enough for Metro Stars head coach Don Jackson who also pulled goalie Andrej Trefilov for an additional attacker. The gamble paid off 37 seconds later when a leaping Craig Johnson deflected in a shot by Tory from the top of the left face-off circle at 16:03.
Düsseldorf kept pressing and was rewarded with the eventual game-winner when Tore Vikingstad scored off the rebound of a shot from fellow-Norwegian Tommy Jakobsen, making it 4-3 with 2:55 to go. Patrick Reimer added another power-play tally 37 seconds later to seal Düsseldorf's come-from-behind win.
Three more Haie players got ejected in the waning minutes of the game after taking out their frustration on American referee Rick Looker.