Jean-Francois Quintin tied Mike Kennedy’s lead late in the second period to sent the game into a penalty contest. Düsseldorf needed only three attempts to seal the win. Trond Magnussen accounted for the winning shot.
“We played a good game tonight,” Munich’s Andy Schneider said. “Everyone played well. It’s unfortunate we lost in the penalty shootout.”
Schneider, who was moved back to defense again with Jason Herter, Kent Fearns and Mike Smazal out, continued his great form. The 29-year-old, who scored 12 points in his last 10 games, didn’t score this time around but once again played strong at both ends of the ice.
“Playing in Düsseldorf,” Schneider added, “it’s always a tough game. They played well tonight. We would have liked to get two (points), but we’re happy with one also.”
The shot total of 40:26 in favor of the DEG was a little deceiving, though. Despite being outshot, the Barons dominated most of the game.Kennedy draws first blood
Mike Kennedy got the Barons ahead with 4:36 left in the first. The winger has been on a roll lately, tallying seven points in the past nine games, including two game-winning scores.
Wheeldon cleared the puck out of his own zone. Kennedy sped along the right boards and picked it up just inside the Düsseldorf blueline. He worked the puck behind the net and tried to dump it out in front with the backhand. The puck got stuck, though, as Kennedy continued around the boards. But Wheeldon picked it up and centered it to back to Kennedy who wristed it past DEG netminder Andrej Trefilov from right between the hashmarks.
The Barons caught a lucky break midway through the second when Düsseldorf’s Leo Stefan picked up a loose rebound right at the doorstep with the net wide-open. However defender Shane Peacock came to help goalie Boris Rousson. He blocked Stefan’s shot and the shot sailed only inches over the crossbar.
In continuing action, Peacock wrestled down Stefan, though, and was sent to the penalty box. Only 46 seconds later, Jean-Francois Quintin came up with the equalizer. He screened Rousson and deflected a point blast from Chris Bartolone right through the netminder’s five-hole.
With just over two minutes to go in the period, Rousson got a little revenge when he robbed Quintin on a counterattack to keep the score at one apiece.Vivid final period
The final period saw good opportunities on both ends, with the Barons’ domination growing towards the end of the game as the Düsseldorf squad, operating with only three lines, seemingly got more and more tired. Shane Peacock, Derek Plante and Mike Kennedy wasted Munich’s biggest opportunities.
On a 2-on-1 break, Peacock couldn’t get the puck across to Oliver in front of the DEG net. “The Chief” was able to regain control of the blocked pass, but he missed the net wide right. With just over six minutes to go in regulation, Plante unleashed a point blast from the upper slot. Trefilov mishandled the puck, but the Barons couldn’t control the rebound.
Three minutes from the final horn, Kennedy had a chance to put Munich up 2-1. Entering the zone, Jörg Handrick drew the attention of two defenders and centered the puck with a one-handed pass. Kennedy found himself all alone in front of Trefilov. He tried to skate around the Russian, but the sliding goalie stopped him.
Düsseldorf had its opportunities, too. Midway through the third, Quintin once again found himself on an odd-man rush. But Munich’s Andy Schneider came rushing in from out of nowhere to clear with a nicely timed poke check.
The game appeared to be heading to overtime when Munich was almost surprised by a late DEG rally. First, a blast by Tore Vikingstad missed the Barons net by only a couple of inches. Seconds later, Leo Stefan tried to fool Rousson with a wrap-around. The Barons goalie denied him, though, and sent the game into a penalty contest.DEG perfect in the shootout
Seeking their seventh straight win, the DEG was the sharper team in the shootout. They only needed three attempts to put it out of reach. While Schneider, David Oliver and Derek King couldn’t convert for the Barons, all three Düsseldorf shooters did. Trond Magnussen drew first blood when he beat the sprawling Rousson, putting the puck right into a small hole between the netminder’s pads and the pipe. Fellow-Norwegian Tore Vikingstad made it 2-0, beating Rousson high to the glove side. Belgian Mike Pellegrims sealed Düsseldorf’s shootout victory with a backhander to the sticksideDüsseldorfer EG - Munich Barons 2-1 (0-1, 1-0, 0-0, 1-0) after penalty shootout
Scoring: 0-1 (15:26) Mike Kennedy (Simon Wheeldon, Jörg Handrick), 1-1 (35:38) Jean-Francois Quintin (Neil Eisenhut, Christopher Bartolone - 5:4).
Penalty Shootout (Game-Winning Score): 2-1 Trond Magnussen.
Penalties: Düsseldorf 10, Munich 16.
Attendance: 4,757 (Stadion an der Brehmstraße, Düsseldorf).