Baltic Challenge Cup 2018: Lithuania vs. Belarus B, #77 Cypas Domantas, #11 Aliaksandar Puklohvski, #50 Mantas Armalis, #14 Tomasz Krukowski. (c) Franz Berger/Baltics Media

Latvia defeats Romania 2-1 and faces Japan in the final – Lithuania lose to Belarus B 0-1 and play for fifth place against Estonia.

Host Lithuania needed a win against the B-team from Belarus to move into the final of the Baltic Challenge Cup. At the beginning it looked quite the same, the first chances had Rybakov and Bedzius. Both failed in goalie Viarbitski, he caught today a very happy good day. Lithuania repeatedly on the rise, but the Belarusian goalie was the last stop. The Belarusians let the hosts come and came in the fast counterattack dangerous again and again in front of the goal of Armalis. Belarus came to a power play five minutes before the first break. After a very concentrated and accurate passing game, Kirill scored the 1-0 (17.) three minutes before the break after Slysh’s pass. Two seconds before the break Feklistov had another opportunity, he failed to Armalis.

After the break Lithuania came out of the cabin like an avalanche and, to the delight of the nearly sold-out arena, there were rolling attacks from the White Gate – Cetvertak, Verenis, Gintautas and also Bendzius – they could not beat Viarbitski. The first attack of the Belarusians only after nine minutes, so strong played the Lithuanian team, but that could not convert the chances in goals. Lithuania slowly started to run out of time. Just under a minute before the second break Lithuania had a power play – but Feklistov forgives his chance of a short-handed-goal – Armalis was on hand.

Fast ice hockey was also offered in the final third, however, the compelling opportunities were no longer as existent as before. Therefore, Lithuania tried with long shots – Krakauskas and Bosas forgave. Belarus now only played counter-attacks, which were carried out dangerously. Armalis prevented further goals from Yahoray or Samokhin. The best opportunity for compensation had Krakauskas, who saw the puck already in the net, but Viarbitski saves the lead with an incredible reflex. To unsightly action, there were nearly 90 secunds before the end – Kapulets plays through the lithuanian defense and was actually mowed down by Krukowski. Kapulets had to be taken injured into the cabin and Krukowski drove off the ice by itself. Belarus beat Lithuania 1-0 and play for third place – Lithuania as group last for 5th place.

Team Lithuania vs. Team Belarus B 0-1 (0-1, 0-0, 0-0)

In the afternoon game between Latvia and Romania they went to the finals. Both teams are in a final win. In a rapid game – the first period lasted just under 27 minutes – both teams offered great ice hockey. After a balanced first period, it went scoreless in the first break. Then it continued at the same high level and it also fell the first goals. Latvia was 1-0 up front in a power play through Bernhards (34.) and only 26 seconds later Riekstins increased to 2-0 (34.). Romania quickly overcame these fast goals and only three minutes later shortened Balasz to 1-2 (37.). In the final third it went back and forth, because both teams sought the decision. There were no goals left, so Latvia are in the final.


Baltic Challenge Cup 2018: Team Latvia B Franz Berger/Baltics Media

Team Latvia B vs. Team Romania 2-1 (0-0, 2-1, 0-0)

Game Pl. 5: Lithuania vs. Estonia, 19.00

Game Pl. 3: Belarus B vs. Romania, 12.00

Final: Japan vs. Latvia B, 15.30