Dominant Hungarians & Poles set up Sunday showdown

Dominant Hungarians & Poles set up Sunday showdown

12 Feb 2016 | Luke Fisher. Quotes translated by Csaba Devai
 

Hungary and Poland will head into Sunday's showdown match in Budapest knowing that the winner will advance to the final Olympic Qualifying stage, after both sides put on dominate displays on Friday.

 
 
 
 

In the day's late game, Hungary saw of Estonia 7-1 in front of another packed home crowd, with early goals from Istvan Sofron in the slot and Vilmos Gallo on a breakaway. Sofron added a third early in the middle period before Robert Rooba pulled one back for the Estonians. The visitors hope was short-lived however, as Frank Banham re-established the home side's three-goal cushion only a few minutes later. In the final period Hungary found themselves up against a tiring opposition, allowing Peter Vincze to net two goals, and a late goal for Andrew Sarauer made it seven in total.

Earlier, Poland completed a destruction of Lithuania to keep their perfect record going. Despite a tight opening phase, Lithuania conceded five goals in just over a ten minute spell across the first and second periods to put Poland firmly in control. Before the break Malasinski added another, and Dziubinski his second of the game to put Poland 7-0 ahead with just 40 minutes played. Zapala and Bepierszcz made it nine with a little over seven minutes remaining, and despite Bogdzuil ruining Odrobny's shutout late on, nothing could take away from a dominating performance from Poland. 

"It was a very strange game to me. They were playing quite defensively mainly in their own end, sitting and waiting for us to lose the puck in the neutral zone" said Hungarian coach Rich Chernomaz of his side's game against Estonia. "Unfortunately we did that too many times most of them took place in the first two periods. I wasn’t satisfied the pace of the game, we were a little bit slower both physically and mentally than I had accepted. Miraculously our performance in the third period was nothing like that, everyone could see the passion in the players’ eyes, and they played with huge energy. That is the type of mentality we must follow in order to win the most important game on Sunday."

Jussi Tupamaki, who saw his Estonia side lose their second third game in succession, said: "We could see how a team plays which will compete between the best teams in the world. I was happy about the way we played in the first two periods. In the third period we got tired and made serious mistakes, but in overall I’m proud of my team. We fought against a really tough team which is today way ahead of us."

Young forward Péter Vincze notched two goals from the fourth line, and was understandably very happy. "It was one my aims to score a goal in the national team before turning 21 and I’m very happy that I could achieve it tonight – twice. Every young player in the team –including me – tries to play as energetically and physically as possible and maybe that is why our young fourth line has played quite well. The day-off tomorrow will be very useful, we will talk through everything, and of course we’re preparing hard for the final of the tournament," said the Fehervar youngster.

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