February 25, 2018
The OAR team have won Russia’s first gold medal in ice hockey since 1992 in Albertville after beating Germany 4-3 in sudden-death overtime. This means Germany have won their first-ever silver medal in Olympic ice hockey.
This was a Olympic gold-medal ice hockey match that won’t be soon forgotten to say the least. The Olympic Athletes from Russia (OAR) needed a powerplay goal in overtime to beat Germany 4-3 to win gold. Germany were left with the silver medal, disappointing on the night, but the country’s best-ever finish in men’s ice hockey.
It was a truly heroic effort from the German underdogs against the highly favored Russians, who were competing under a neutral flag due to the ban imposed on their country over allegations of a state-sponsored doping system.
Comebacks from two deficits
Twice Germany bounced back from setback, the first coming with less than a second left to play in the first period, when Russian defenseman Vyacheslav Voinov drew first blood.
The Germans, though, came back with the equalizer in the first minute of the second, Felix Schütz being awarded the goal, a soft one for the Russian netminder to concede.
The Russians went into the lead again early in the third, when Nikita Gusev threaded the needle over Gemany goalie Danny Aus den Birken’s shoulder from a bad angle, to make it 2-1.
Again Germany fought back, with Dominik Kahun beating Vasili Koshechkin just 10 seconds later to even the score.
Germany took the lead for the first time with under four minutes to play and it looked as if Jonas Müller had won them the gold medal. The Russians even took a penalty, giving the Germans the man advantage for the last two minutes. However, Gusev found the target for his second with 59 seconds left to force overtime.
Russia capitalize on PP in OT
Germany kept things close in the extra frame, but Patrick Reimer took a high-sticking penalty halfway through the period, putting the Russians on the powerplay. The Russians took advantage, with Kirill Kaprizov scoring on the PP to win it for Russia in sudden death.
This gave the Russians their first gold medal in ice hockey since 1992 in Albertville, when they were known as the United Team. For Germany, who won the silver medal, this is the greatest achievement in the country’s ice hockey history, eclipsing that of the 1976 West German team, who won bronze in Innsbruck in 1976.