videohighlights ahl
The three Vorarlberg sides, FBI VEU Feldkirch, EHC Alge Elastic Lustenau and EC Bregenzerwald, as well as EC „Die Adler“ Stadtwerke Kitzbühel started the year 2017 with home wins. While HC Pustertal Wolves ended Asiago’s winning streak in front of their crowd, HC Gherdeina and leaders Rittner Buam were successful on the road.

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HC Neumarkt Riwega – HC Gherdeina 3:4
Second consecutive home game for Neumarkt that challenged Gherdeina in an Alto Adige derby. The home team could not have Hannes Oberrauch for fever. The hosts started definitely better and were more dangerous on the powerplay. But the goal of Neumarkt arrived in the situation of four on four. Michael Sullmann passed to his brother Alex that with a powerful shot from distance scored the lead for Wild Goose after 3 minutes of the game. But the Gherdeina answered after 5 minutes. The home team missed a shift as they left space in the center ice: Derek Eastman served Ivan Demetz that realized the tie with a shot under the crossbar alone in front of the net. Then the home team suffered three consecutive penalties but the Neumarkt played better. Michael Sullmann realized with a nice shot from near position in shorthanded situation. The Wild Goose closed lead the first period (2:1). During the second period, the situation was different. The home team played in powerplay for three times but didn’t take advantage of favorable situation. Benjamin Konstner tied in situations of powerplay after 32’ minutes of the game with one-timer shot. But the hosts went back in the lead after a puck lost by the "Fury" in defense. Ratislav Gaspar, after 36 minutes of the game, made no mistake in the front of the net as he allowed to Wild Goose to close the lead to 3-2 after two periods of game. During the third period Gherdeina overturned the result as they went to win the match. After 3 minutes Fabrizio Senoner scored the draw (3-3) in powerplay with a shot from the blue. Then the formation of coach Patrice Lefebvre took the lead for the first time in the match as they kept this result until end of the match. The goal was worth the victory to 4-3 for the "Fury" was Diego Iori. The forward scored the winning goal in four on four in the breakaway. The difference of the game was just the management of special teams. Neumarkt, before the end of the game, could took advantage of two other superiority but they didn’t manage to score.

EC Bregenzerwald – Red Bull Hockey Juniors 6:1
Bregenzerwald started the new year as planned with Philipp Pöschmann opening the scoring against Salzburg after only 92 seconds. Just a few moments later Philipp Putnik doubled the lead but the visitors tried to hit back immediately. But Daniel Wachter and Patrik Kittinger failed to score because of ECB netminder Misa Pietilä. After Juniors player Maximilian Daubner only caught the post, the home side added a third by Christian Haidinger. After twelve minutes Scott Nordh got the puck at the blue line and put his colours 4:0 up. After the fourth goal against, Kevin Reich was replaced by Axel Feichter. The Red Bulls became stronger in the second but the first penalty got the momentum back to Bregenzerwald and Putnik went five-hole on Feichter for a 5:0 lead. After the midway point oft he game Marcus Jörgensen got the Juniors on the scoreboard but late in the period Simon Schweiger restored the five-goal home lead with his first goal in Sky Alps Hockey League. In the third period also the hosts made a goalie change when Karlo Skec made his debut. The 18-year-old had some good saves against his former club and kept a clean sheet for a 6:1 home win.

FBI VEU Feldkirch – EC KAC II 8:2
Both teams entered the match very offensively-minded an das a result the fans saw a lot of goals this evening. At the midway point of the first Klagenfurt made the breakthrough with a power play marker by Philipp Kreuzer. The home side answered promptly with a Dylan Stanley goal and Christoph Draschkowitz turned the game around just three minutes later when he was all alone in the slot. Before the first intermission Kevin Puschnik added his first oft he night with a man advantage and the home team also opened the scoring in the middle frame when Victor Lindgren litt he lamp for a 4:1 score. Feldkirch wasted some more chances in this period but found the back of the net in the third again. After Florian Kurath pulled one back for Klagenfurt on a shorthanded situation, Puschnik fired home in the same power play. After Smail Samardzic and Daniel Fekete signed into the scoring sheets, Puschnik rounded off the scoring with his hat trick for a final 8:2 result.

EC „Die Adler“ Stadtwerke Kitzbühel – EK Zeller Eisbären 3:1
The derby in front of 1.100 spectaotrs delivered what it promised. The hosts got off a better start and fired goalwards in the opening minutes. In the 4th minute Felix Brunner made the breakthrough with his first goal of the season. It was also the only goal in the first period.Both teams were at eye level in the middle frame with Florian Dinhopel tying the game after the midway point. 71 seconds before the second intermission Kitzbühel’s new arrival Anairs Podzins restored their lead. It was an exciting third period with both goalies doing great. In a final push the visitors pulled their netminder for a sixth skater and Johan Burlin made it safe with an empty netter for a 3:1 KEC win.

HC Pustertal Wolves – Migross Supermercati Asiago Hockey 1935 3:0
One of the most important matches of the evening was play at the stadium "Lungo Rienza" of Bruneck – 2000 spectators - between the hosts, have already qualified for the Master Round, against Asiago in the running for the Master Round. Maksims Sirokovs was absent for the home team while in Asiago were absent Anthony Nigro (suspended), Lorenzo Casetti (suspended) and Andrea Strazzabosco (injured). The visitor controlled the game and played better. The home team defended with order and tried to hit on the break. After 12' the Wolves received a penalty for 2': Asiago was very close to the goal. Bruneck was saved and the first period ended without goals. During the second period the yellowread team was still really dangerous but they didn’t succeed. Then from half-time the Bruneck was more incisive in attack zone as they came close twice in the first goal of the evening thanks also on the powerplay situation. The second time, as the first, ended without goals. During the third period Bruneck was finally able to break the balance with the goal of Wacey Rabbit after 47 minutes of play. Then the Pustetal team played better while Asiago miss a good chance to equalize with Giulio Scandella. The Wolves scored again with a shot under crossbar with Shayne Wiebe (powerplay). Then great action of Patrick Bona that served in the front of the net Max Oberrauch. The striker scored into open net the final goal. Wolves won 3:0 as they consolidated the 2th place. Fourth shutout for Thomas Tragust in the season, while Asiago lost after 13 consecutive wins.

HC Fassa Falcons – Rittner Buam 1:4
Second consecutive home game for Fassa. The Falcons challenged the leaders of Sky Alps Hockey league of Rittner Buam. The beginning of the match was completely in favor of the guests. The Klobstein team put so much pressure. After 10 minutes they made the first goal. Oskar Ahlstrom scored for the visitors after a previous post of Ivan Tauferer. Then Renon couldn’t double up despite the many shots towards Gianni Scola, the netminder of Falcons. During the second period the game was much more balanced and hard-fought. The Buam scored 2:0 in powerplay with Viktor Ahlstrom but the home team remained in the game. During the opening of the third time there was the goal of Stefan Della Rovere which halves the disadvantage of the Falcons. The match remained very tight. Then in the last minutes Renon closed the match with goals of Julian Kostner and Christian Borgatello. The Renon won 4:1 as they kept six points of advantage against HC Pustertal, 2th in the standings.

EHC Alge Elastic Lustenau – HDD SIJ Acroni Jesenice 3:0
Due to Jesenice having traffic problems, the game started with a 30 minutes delay. Both teams did not care about that as the match was fast-paced with just a few interruptions. Lustenau had the better of the play in the course oft he opening period and Petr Vala scored the deserved lead after 16 minutes with Stefan Wiedmaier assisting. The fans did not see another goals in the middle frame but got their money*s worth in an exciting match. In the third new arrival Martins Cipulis doubled the lead and at the other end Patrick Machreich made some big saves for Lustenau. When Jesenice pulled their goalie, Dusan Devecka made the game safe with a chip from his own zone.

Sky Alps Hockey League:
02.01.2017: HC Neumarkt Riwega – HC Gherdeina 3:4 (2:1; 1:1; 0:2)
Goals Neumarkt: 1:0 A. Sullmann (3./M.Sullmann); 2:1 M.Sullmann (15./Willeit); 3:2 Gaspar (36./Lundstrom);
Goals Gherdeina: 1:1 I.Demetz (7./Eastman-F.Senoner); 2:2 B.Kostner (32./pp1/I.Demetz-D.Iori); 3:3 F.Senoner (43./pp1/G.Vinatzer-Straka); 3:4 Iori (46./Straka-Ellis);

02.01.2017: EC Bregenzerwald – Red Bull Hockey Juniors 6:1 (4:0, 2:1, 0:0)
Goals Bregenzerwald: Pöschman (2./D. Ban-Wolf), Putnik (3./Koczera-Haidinger, 26./ Koczera-Haidinger), Haidinger (10./Koczera-Nordh), Nordh (13./Putnik-Koczera), Schwinger (39./Judex-C. Ban)
Goal Juniors: Jörgensen (33./Wappis-Valach)

02.01.2017: FBI VEU Feldkirch – EC KAC II 8:2 (3:1, 1:0, 4:1)
Goals Feldkirch: Stanley (12./Mairitsch-Puschnik), Draschkowitz (15./Winzig-Breuß), Puschnik (18./PP1-Birnstill-Stanley, 44./PP1-Stanley-Mairitsch, 54./PP1-Stanley-Birnstill), Lindgren (26./PP1-Draschkowitz-Parks), Samardzic (46./Schonaklener-Sticha), Fekete (50./Maier-Parks)
Goals KAC: Kreuzer (11./PP1-Schettina), Kurath (44./SH)

02.01.2017: EC „Die Adler“ Stadtwerke Kitzbühel – EK Zeller Eisbären 3:1 (1:0, 1:1, 1:0)
Goals Kitzbühel: Brunner (4./Sarkanis-Lenes), Podzins (39./Hochfilzer), Burlin (60./en)
Goal Zell am See: Dinhopel (32./Pöck-Polata)

02.01.2017: HC Pustertal Wolves – Migross Supermercati Asiago Hockey 1935 3:0 (0:0, 0:0, 3:0)
Goal Pustertal: 1:0 Rabbit (47./Hofer-Andergassen); 2:0 Wiebe (55./pp1/Helfer-Bona); 3:0 Oberrauch (57./Bona);

02.01.2017: HC Fassa Falcons – Rittner Buam 1:4 (0:1; 0:1; 1:2)
Goal Fassa: 1:2 Della Rovere (42./Walker-Bustreo);
Goals Rittner Buam: 0:1 O. Ahlströhm (9./S.Kostner); 0:2 V. Ahlströhm (27./pp1/Borgatello- O.Ahlströhm); 1:3 J.Kostner (52./I.Tauferer-Frei); 1:4 Borgatello (56./Sprukts);

02.01.2017: EHC Alge Elastic Lustenau – HDD SIJ Acroni Jesenice 3:0 (1:0, 0:0, 2:0)
Goals Lustenau: Vala (16./Wiedmaier-Hrdina, Cipulis (46./ Auer-Gricinskis), Devecka (58./EN-Wilfan-Witting)

1) RIT 71 (27)
2) PUS 65 (26)
3) VEU 52 (26) 
4) JES 48 (25)
5) EHC 48 (25)
6) ASH 44 (25) 
7) SGC 42 (24)
8) EKZ 32 (25)
9) WSV 31 (24) 
10) RBJ 31 (27) 
11) HCN 30 (26)
12) KEC 26 (25) 
13) GHE 25 (26) 
14) FAS 25 (25) 
15) ECB 24 (25)
16) KA2 15 (25)

Photo: Max Pattis