Nitra stretches winning streak to six in Slovak ice hockey premiership

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BRATISLAVA, Nov. 9 (Xinhua) -- Nitra continues to dominate the Slovak ice hockey premiership Tipos Extraliga with its sixth triumph in a row, although last-ranked Liptovsky Mikulas put up an unexpectedly feisty fight on Sunday.

Nove Zamky leads Nitra at the top of the table, but has played three more games.

Poprad's respectable four-game winning streak came to an end as Detva forced overtime and completed the comeback with a last-minute goal.

A whopping 11 goals adorned Nitra's fight for the top of the rankings and Liptovsky Mikulas' effort to gain its first points of the 2020/21 season.

Nitra's forwards Roman Zitny and Adam Dauda led the scoring department of the see-saw match with two goals and two assists each. If it wasn't for the visitors' excellent goalie Patrik Kozel who made 47 saves, Liptovsky Mikulas' loss would have been a lot worse. The visitors remain at the very bottom with six defeats in six rounds.

Nove Zamky's Czech forward Filip Bajtek scored twice and added two assists against Banska Bystrica to pave the way to victory, keeping the opponents - the struggling champions of the previous three seasons - in the uncomfortable bottom section of the rankings.

His teammate Marcel Holovic added two goals. "It was a tough match, I scored after getting passes from our opponents, which I am thankful for. We are glad to stay on top of the league for now. We are playing like a true team and our goalie provides the necessary support," said Holovic after the game.

In the north of the country, Poprad Hockey Club was close to stretching its winning streak to five but the "bears" of Detva tied the game at 2-2 in the final stretch, forcing overtime.

Just as the game was heading for a penalty shootout, Detva's Canadian forward Jonathan Charbonneau was fouled on his scoring attempt and capitalized on the subsequent penalty shot in the last minute, bringing home the 6-5 OT victory for Detva. With three other teams sitting on 13 points, the fight for the third spot remains wide open.

The Sunday fixtures also offered the most notorious derby in the Tipos Extraliga - the fight between the two largest cities in Slovakia, known as the battle between east and west - Kosice versus Bratislava.

The two traditional clubs are unexpectedly struggling this season and rather than fighting for first, occupy the bottom half of the standings.

Kosice's latest home performance turned into one of the worst this season, ending up completely empty-handed.

The visitors from the capital city did not dazzle either, scoring just two goals, both by Canadian forward Brendan O'Donnell, but moved up two spots in the rankings to seventh, nevertheless.

"I have seen in my guys since this morning that they have the will to break the two-game losing streak. We did well on penalty kills but we were not able to find a way around Slovan's goalie," admitted Kosice's coach Jan Stastny after being forced to surrender their spot in the league standings to Bratislava.

HK Nitra - HK 32 Liptovsky Mikulas 6-5

HC '05 Banska Bystrica - HC Mikron Nove Zamky 3-5

HK Poprad - HC 07 WPC Koliba Detva 2-3 in OT

HC Kosice - HC Slovan Bratislava 0-2


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