German Elite League Hockey * English coverage of Germany's DEL Deutsche Eishockey Liga
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Playoff-hungry Panthers win again
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Februar 24, 2004; 13:24
Playoff-hungry Panthers win again
DEG Metro Stars thrash Hanover
Frank Johne

Former Chicago Wolves netminder Andrej Trefilov
Andrej Trefilov recorded shutout no. 3

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Munich, Germany - They seemed to be on the brink of elimination just a week ago. But all of a sudden, the Augsburger Panther are getting the lucky bounces they didn’t get during a five-game losing streak and remain in contention for the final playoff berth in the Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL). Roughly 48 hours after John Miner scored a last-minute game-winner against the Krefeld Pinguine, Rick Girard connected on a bad-angle shot in the late going that lifted Augsburg over the Frankfurt Lions Sunday night.

Rick Girard of the Augsburg Panthers
Still alive: Augsburg's Rick Girard's scored a late GWG
Leading DEL Scorers
(as of Feb 19, 2005)

Girard’s shot bounced off goalie Ian Gordon’s back and into the net at 15:47 of the final period to give the Augsburger Panther a 4-3 (0-1, 2-0, 2-2) home win over the Frankfurt Lions, who have lost three of their last four. Girard had two goals on the night.

DEL playoff race

Only the top four teams, Berlin Eisbären (33-15, 99 points), Frankfurt Lions (30-18, 89pts), Hamburg Freezers (29-19, 88pts) and Nürnberg Ice Tigers (30-17, 85pts), have officially clinched a playoff berth. ERC Ingolstadt (29-19, 85pts) and the Mannheim Adler (27-21, 83pts) are virtually in; both would have to lose all of their remaining four games to drop out of the playoff ranks.

This leaves the Kölner Haie (25-22, 80pts), DEG Metro Stars (26-21, 76pts) and Augsburg (24-24, 73pts) battling for the final two spots in the 2004 DEL playoffs. Cologne and Düsseldorf each have five games remaining in the regular season while Augsburg has only four games left.

The Kassel Huskies (21-26, 60pts), defending champion Krefeld Pinguine (19-28, 55pts), Iserlohn Roosters (17-30, 54pts), Hannover Scorpions (14-34, 45pts) and Freiburg Wölfe (9-39, 27pts) are eliminated from playoff contention.

Sunday’s game capsules

Sven Felski, Nils Antons and Steve Walker provided the scoring as the Berlin Eisbären cruised to a 3-1 (1-0, 2-0, 0-1) victory over the Krefeld Pinguine at the Wellblechpalast Sunday.

Ted Drury’s power-play tally at 10:13 of the final period lifted the Kassel Huskies to a 2-1 (0-0, 1-1, 1-0) home win over ERC Ingolstadt.

Dave Tomlinson and Bobby House each scored two goals and an assist as the Hamburg Freezers rallied from a 3-2 deficit to down the Iserlohn Roosters 4-3 (1-1, 2-2, 1-0).

Henrik Hölscher led the way with a short-handed goal and a helper as the Freiburg Wölfe skated to their fourth straight win at home, defeating the Kölner Haie (0-0, 1-1, 2-0).

Derek Plante and Fabio Carciola both had a goal and an assist as the Mannheim Adler overcame an early deficit to beat the Nürnberg Ice Tigers at home 3-1 (1-1, 1-0, 1-0).

Andrej Trefilov stopped 23 shots for his third shutout and defenseman Martin Ulrich recorded three assists as the DEG Metro Stars blanked the Hannover Scorpions 7-0 (2-0, 4-0, 1-0).
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