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Hamburg, Cologne clinch home ice
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März 8, 2004; 02:34
Hamburg, Cologne clinch home ice
Lebeau named MVP - DEL Playoffs start Wednesday
Frank Johne

Dany Bousquet of the Freiburg Wolves
Dany Bousquet's hot hands could be key in the relegation series

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Munich, Germany - ERC Ingolstadt finished the regular season on a high note Sunday, blowing out the first-place Berlin Eisbären at Saturn Arena. The win didn’t help, though, as ERC stayed in 7th place. The Hamburg Freezers and Kölner Haie ended up in 3rd and 4th place respectively and secured themselves home ice in the opening round of the DEL Playoffs, which start this Wednesday. The naming of Pat Lebeau as League MVP provided only little consolation for the slumping Frankfurt Lions, who suffered yet another loss. Bottom clubs Hanover and Freiburg will also have postseason action, clashing in a seven-game relegation series.

DEL MVP Patrick Lebeau
Frankfurt Lions forward Pat Lebeau was named League MVP
Leading DEL Scorers
(as of Feb 19, 2005)

First-round match-ups

Brad Purdie had two points and also scored the game-winning penalty shot as the Hamburg Freezers downed the Kassel Huskies 3-2 (2-1, 0-1, 0-0, 1-0). The Kölner Haie also had to go to the extra session, losing 2-1 (0-0, 1-1, 0-0, 1-0) at home to the Mannheim Adler after shootout. Jason Podollan was credited with the game-winner.

Thanks to the win, the Mannheim Adler finished 6th overall and will take on the 3rd-seeded Hamburg Freezers in the playoffs. The 4th-seeded Kölner Haie will entertain the 5th-seeded Frankfurt Lions. 7th-seeded ERC Ingolstadt won’t have to travel far. They will clash with local rival Nürnberg Ice Tigers, who held on to the second seed despite a 2-1 loss at Freiburg. The top-seeded Berlin Eisbären will face the 8th-seeded DEG Metro Stars.

Lebeau named League MVP

The slumping Frankfurt Lions finished the regular with yet another loss and ended up with the fifth seed. Rich Chernomaz’s team has lost 6 out of 8 games since the February All-Star Break. They were downed at home, 2-1 (0-1, 1-0, 0-0, 1-0) by the Hannover Scorpions. Jeff Christian got credit for the game-winning penalty shot.

Pat Lebeau scored Frankfurt’s only goal on the power-play. Before the game, Lebeau was announced as the 2003-04 League MVP. His 69 points (23G, 46A) led the DEL in scoring.

Freiburg: League-leading goal scorer Bousquet scores GWG

Dany Bousquet notched the game-winner midway through the second as the last-place Freiburger Wölfe edged the Nürnberg Ice Tigers 2-1 (0-0, 2-0, 0-1). Bousquet finished the regular season as the DEL’s leading goal scorer with 30 tallies.

The season is not over for Freiburg and Hanover. Both teams will meet in the so-called “Playdowns”. The loser of this best-of-seven series will be relegated to Division-2.

Conti big as Ingolstadt crushes Berlin

Neville Rautert and Craig Ferguson both had a goal and an assist as ERC Ingolstadt crushed the Berlin Eisbären 4-1 (1-0, 2-1, 1-0). ERC netminder Leonardo Conti, who made only his third start of the season, was the backbone of Ingolstadt’s win with 34 saves.

Krefeld, Augsburg win final games

Defending champion Krefeld, which missed the playoffs, finished the season with a 4-2 (1-1, 2-1, 1-0) home win over the Iserlohn Roosters. Youngster Jonas Lanier led the way with a pair of goals.

Andrej Strakhov and Francois Fortier each had a goal and three assists as the Augsburger Panther closed out their campaign with a 5-3 (0-0, 4-1, 1-2) home victory over the DEG Metro Stars.

Postseason match-ups (best-of-seven)

Berlin Eisbären (1) vs. DEG Metro Stars (8)
Nürnberg Ice Tigers (2) vs. ERC Ingolstadt (7)
Hamburg Freezers (3) vs. Mannheim Adler (6)
Kölner Haie (4) vs. Frankfurt Lions (5)

Playdowns (Loser will be relegated to Division-2; best-of-seven):
Hannover Scorpions vs. Freiburg Wölfe

Final DEL standings 2003-04 (52 games)

1 Eisbären Berlin 103 34-18 171:126
2 Nürnberg Ice Tigers 96 34-18 179:128
3 Hamburg Freezers 95 32-20 151:115
4 Kölner Haie 93 29-23 160:134
5 Frankfurt Lions 92 31-21 177:148
6 Adler Mannheim 92 30-22 151:124
7 ERC Ingolstadt 92 31-21 132:118
8 DEG Metro Stars 82 28-24 141:129
9 Augsburger Panther 78 26-26 180:177
10 Krefeld Pinguine 64 22-30 127:149
11 Kassel Huskies 64 22-30 129:166
12 Iserlohn Roosters 59 19-33 137:169
13 Hannover Scorpions 48 15-37 127:180
14 Wölfe Freiburg 34 11-41 142:241
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