Finnish newcomer Atte Tolvanen kept his box clean in the Ice Bulls’ home win over leaders Fehérvár.
Before the ice bulls get serious again in the Champions Hockey League (CHL) on Tuesday, they passed the final endurance test in the ICE Hockey League with flying colors. Salzburg had to contest two particularly difficult matches within 24 hours. Only there they compete as the first team in the new Hexenkessel in Bruneck on Friday, the next day the previously undefeated table leader Fehérvár was a guest in the Volksgarten.
In the first game, Salzburg showed great fighting spirit and won after falling behind in extra time. The star player was newcomer TJ Brennan with three hits, including the single in overtime.
On Saturday it was goalkeeper Atte Tolvanen who was named Man of the Match. The first goalie signed at the beginning of the week celebrates a perfect debut in Salzburg with a shutout and thus lays the foundation for the 3-0 home win over leaders Fehérvár. For the Hungarians it was the first defeat of the current season.
“Of course I’m happy about my shutout. I really enjoyed it because it was my first game in a long time,” said the Finn positively. “And with the great spectators in the Salzburg ice arena today, it was even more fun.” Coach Matt McIlvane was also happy that the new goalkeeper was able to present himself so strongly. “When we needed a save, Atte was there for us. You can hardly have a much better start than him,” said the American, who was also very satisfied with the rest of the team. “For me today it was just a great example of team play. The whole team swore brilliantly together, blocked shots, prevented passes and put a lot of pressure on. Above all, we kept the opponent busy in his third.”
Up front the German top talent Danjo Leonhardt struck once again, and captain Thomas Raffl and newcomer Ali Wukovits also met. This means that Salzburg will go into the CHL home game against Bolzano on Tuesday with great self-confidence.