Dinamo ended a two-game scoring blank to pick up a point at home to playoff chasing HC Sochi, but the Latvians fell in overtime as the Leopards kept their hopes of a top-eight finish alive.
Sochi can afford few slips in the closing weeks of the season if it is to make up an eight-point gap to the playoff places, but the visitor made a sluggish start in Riga. Dinamo shaded the first period in most areas, but still allowed the only goal of the frame when Dmitry Lugin scored midway through.
The middle frame was dominated by Dinamo, outshooting Sochi 17-4. The host was helped by a string of minor penalties, but suffered a blow late in the session when Andris Dzerins was assessed a game misconduct penalty. Dinamo then killed two penalties early in the third before Alexander Protapovich conjured an equalizer and took the game into overtime.
The extras were brief, though. Sochi started on the front foot and Swedish defenseman David Rundblad fired home the winner after 43 seconds. It was the former SKA man’s first goal since his move to Sochi.