The Fischtown Pinguins from Bremerhaven have put a clear exclamation mark at the start of the playoff semi-finals. The surprising main round winner of the German Ice Hockey League defeated the defending champion EHC Red Bull Munich 3-0 (1-0, 2-0, 0-0) in the first of seven possible games.

Record champions Eisbären Berlin were also in good form with a 3-1 (1-0, 2-0, 0-1) win against the Straubing Tigers. Four successes are necessary to move into the final series.

Bremerhaven was better from the start against the star ensemble of former national coach Toni Söderholm. Pinguins top striker Jan Urbas scored in the majority to make it 1-0 (6th minute). “We are simply in good shape,” said the Slovenian at MagentaSport.

Penguins goalkeeper Gudlevskis insurmountable

The Pinguins remained undefeated in the quarterfinals against Ingolstadt. Munich also came to the North Sea after a disappointing main round with a 4-0 win over Wolfsburg. But there was hardly any sign of it. Markus Vikingstad (22nd) and Dominik Uher (28th) increased the score for the hosts in the middle third. Kristers Gudlevskis was once again insurmountable in the Penguins goal. The Latvian parried 30 shots from Munich and made Bremerhaven’s opening victory perfect. Game two takes place on Wednesday (7 p.m./MagentaSport) in Munich.

The Eisbären Berlin were very effective against Straubing. After goals from the two national players Kai Wissmann (12th) and Manuel Wiederer (24th) as well as Blaine Byron (29th), the capital club led 3-0.

Straubing shot at goal significantly more often than the Berliners, but for a long time they repeatedly failed to hit the crossbar and the post. The Tigers couldn’t do more than make it 1:3 through Tyler Sheehy shortly before the end. The Eisbären will play in the second meeting on Wednesday (7.30 p.m./MagentaSport) in Straubing.