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Lugano seal playoff berth

The latest round of league ice hockey action saw league leaders Lugano become the first side to guarantee themselves a place in the end of season playoffs.

Jim Koleff's team bounced back from Saturday's defeat in Kloten with a 2-1 win over sixth placed Bern. The side from the Swiss capital are still far from making sure of their own playoff spot with Sunday's defeat leaving them just three points above the playout zone.

With the Zurich Lions concentrating on their weekend's European exploits, Lugano climbed two points clear at the top. Davos moved up to third place, seven points behind the Lions, with a narrow 4-3 win over Rapperswil.

It was the second win of the weekend for Davos, ending the miserable run that has seen them go without a win since their Spengler Cup triumph on New Year's Eve.

For the definition of misery, though, one has only to look to the plight of bottom club, La Chaux-de-Fonds. Already sure of a relegation battle at the end of the season, the side went into Sunday's match against Fribourg having conceded vital goals in the very last second of their three previous matches.

The anguish showed no sign of ending on Sunday. Leading Fribourg 4-3 with the match approaching its end, La Chaux-de-Fonds managed to concede a goal in each of the last three minutes to finish up as 6-3 losers.

Ambri-Piotta are facing an increasingly tough challenge to avoid joining La Chaux-de-Fonds in the playouts. After managing only a 2-2 draw against the bottom side on Saturday (thanks to one of those last second goals) Pierre Pagé's men were beaten 4-1 on Sunday by fellow strugglers Langnau.

Away from the relegation dogfight Zug won their mid-table encounter against Kloten 6-1. Three goals in the last period wrapped up what had been a fairly tight encounter to keep Zug in fourth place, level on points with Davos.

swissinfo with agencies



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