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    KHL: Avangard Goes Top with Donetsk Win

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    Avangard Omsk has climbed to the top of the KHL's Eastern Conference with a 2-0 victory at Donbass Donetsk.

    MOSCOW, December 24 (R-Sport) – Avangard Omsk has climbed to the top of the KHL's Eastern Conference with a 2-0 victory at Donbass Donetsk.

    The win late Sunday put last year’s Gagarin Cup finalist two points ahead of Ak Bars Kazan and Evgeni Malkin's Metallurg Magnitogorsk, while Donbass is balancing on the verge of the playoff zone in the West at ninth.

    It was a second shutout in five days for Finnish goaltender Karri Ramo, who made an impressive 40 saves.

    “It was a very difficult game today,” Avangard coach Petri Matikainen said. “Today, everybody brought something into our win. Especially Karri Ramo. I want to congratulate him on a brilliant performance.”

    Andrei Ivanov hit the opener on 7 minutes, scoring from the crease, before Tomas Zaborsky doubled the visitors’ lead with a rebound goal at the end of the first period.

    In the next two periods, the Ukrainians put some real pressure on Ramo’s goal but failed to make it count.

    The KHL newcomer is tied with eighth-placed Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod on 49 points but has played two more games.

     

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