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Bern move step closer to playoffs

Bern's new coach, Kent Ruhnke, had plenty to cheer about Keystone

Bern ice hockey club, in their first match under new coach Kent Ruhnke, put recent disappointments behind them to secure a vital 2-1 win against Zug.

The result saw the side from the Swiss capital open up a five-point gap between themselves and ninth-placed Lausanne in the race to reach the championship playoffs. Lausanne, who were also playing on Monday evening, were beaten 4-2 by Ruhnke’s old club, Zurich Lions.

In front of 7,400 fans at the Allmend stadium, Bern gave their new coach some early cheer when Juhlin opened the scoring with two minutes of the first period left on the clock.

Then in the 36th minute Laurent Müller doubled the lead to put the home side firmly in the driving seat. But Todd Elik’s 44th minute strike for the visitors ensured a nervous final few minutes for the home fans.

Over in Zurich, the Lions were forced to work hard for their 4-2 victory over Lausanne, who had won at the Hallenstadion on the opening day of the season.

Last season’s champions appeared to have taken the game by the scruff of the neck after going 2-0 ahead in the first five minutes through goals from Steck and Della Rossa. But Philipp Orlandi pulled one back for Lausanne in the 22nd minute.

Hodgson restored the home side’s two-goal cushion in the 54th minute only for Orlandi to grab his second goal of the game two minutes later. The same player also hit a post with two minutes remaining.

But as Lausanne’s luck deserted them, Raffainer stole in wrap up the points for the Lions with a goal in the 59th minute.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR