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Eisbären move on to Finals
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April 8, 2006; 20:18
Eisbären move on to Finals
Vikingstad's hat trick lifts Metro Stars over Haie
Frank Johne

Denis Pederson, Eisbaren Berlin
 
Denis Pederson tallied a pair of goals as Berlin moved on to the DEL Finals

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Munich, Germany - The Berlin Eisbären have reached the DEL Finals for a third consecutive time. Denis Pederson led the way with a couple of goals as the reigning champions won at home Tuesday to sweep their semifinal series against the Hannover Scorpions. In the other best-of-five series, the DEG Metro Stars took a 2-1 lead by routing the Kölner Haie at home in Düsseldorf.
 

Tore Vikingstad of the DEG Metro Stars
Vikingstad scored three goals for Düsseldorf
Leading DEL Scorers
(as of Feb 19, 2005)

Stefan Ustorf led the scoring with a power-play tally and two assists as the top-seeded Berlin Eisbären jumped out to a 4-0 lead and held off a late charge by the 7th-seeded Hannover Scorpions to clinch the series with a 5-3 home win. Hanover outshot Berlin 40-33 over three periods, but the Scorpions hurt themselves with poor discipline and special team play. They went 0-for-5 on the power-play and had two players ejected: Steve Guolla (spearing) and captain Sascha Goc were both assessed game misconducts. Goc had already served a 10-minute misconduct in the first period when he was dismissed after arguing a call with referee Martin Reichert midway through the final stanza. Todd Warriner also received a 10-minute misconduct as Hanover amassed a total of 91 penalty minutes.

Berlin cashed in on three of its 12 power-play opportunities. Eisbären goalie Tomas Pöpperle had a huge night, stopping 37 of the 40 shots he faced. Hanover's Trevor Kidd had 28 saves on the night.

The Eisbären broke the deadlock with 58 seconds to go in the first when Denis Pederson went top shelf on Trevor Kidd's stick side to make it 1-0. Berlin broke out to a 3-0 lead early in the middle frame when Mark Beaufait and Ustorf scored back-to-back within 75 seconds. With the blade of his stick trailing behind him, Beaufait re-directed in a left point shot from Rob Leask at the 2:58-mark. Ustorf scored on the power-play to make it 3-0 4:13 into the second period. Derrick Walser fired in a one-timer from the right point on a two-man advantage to extend Berlin's lead to 4-0 with 52 seconds to go in the second period. Mike Green's second short-handed tally of the postseason put Hanover on the scoreboard 56 seconds into the final frame. Green went topshelf on Pöpperle to cut the Eisbären lead to 4-1. Seconds later Berlin – still up by a man – regained a four-goal lead when Pederson lifted a backhanded shot under the crossbar. A late charge by the Scorpions produced two more goals. Marty Murray tucked home a rebound to make it 5-2 at the 12:20-mark. Robert Hock also scored on a rebound of a deflected shot to cut Berlin's lead to 5-3 with :143 left in the game.

Norwegian Tore Vikingstad led the way with a hat trick as the 3rd-seeded DEG Metro Stars routed the 5th-seeded Kölner Haie 6-1 at home to go up 2-1 in the best-of-five series. Fabian Brännström, Daniel Kreutzer, Klaus Kathan and Peter Ferraro also recorded three-point nights. Düsseldorf's Andrei Trefilov recorded 13 saves on the night. Cologne's starter Thomas Greiss was replaced in the final period after allowing 4 goals on 27 shots. Second-stringer Oliver Jonas stopped 13 of the 15 shots he faced in the final period. While the Haie failed to cash in on any of their 7 power-play opportunities, Düsseldorf went 3-for-10, with all three goals coming from Vikingstad. Both Kreutzer and Kathan recorded assists on all three goals.

Cologne got off to a good start. The Haie took a 1-0 lead 4:53 into the contest on a goal from Jeremy Adduono. On a 3-on-3 rush, Philipp Gogulla took drop pass from Tino Boos, unleashed a slapshot and Adduono tucked the rebound past Trefilov. The Haie drew a flood of penalties during the opening frame. Düsseldorf cashed in late in the first and never looked back. On a 5-on-3 powerplay, Tore Vikingstad scored on a rebound from the right slot to tie the contest at 1-1 with 2:08 left. With Düsseldorf still up by a man, Vikingstad struck again from the same spot just 29 seconds later, one-timing home a nifty backhanded pass from Daniel Kreutzer to make it 2-1. The Metro Stars put the game out of reach early in the second period. Peter Ferraro scored on the rebound of a shot from his brother Chris to extend the Metro Stars lead to 3-1 at the 3:28-mark. On a 2-on-2 break, Fabian Brännström's wrister from the left face-off circle beat Greiss through the five-hole to make it 4-1 at 6:43 of the second.

Haie forward Tino Boos got ejected after a head butt late in the second period. Vikingstad scored on the rebound of a shot by Kreutzer to extend Düsseldorf's lead to 5-1 on the man advantage midway through the final stanza. Peter Ferraro capped the scoring at 6-1 with 5:03 left, knocking home the puck after a backhanded shot from Brännström ricocheted off backboards.
Frank Johne

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