Cardiff sunk by ice cold Iskhakov

Ruslan Iskhakov’s hat-trick for Adler Mannheim put Cardiff Devils to the sword in their Champions Hockey League rematch as the Germans took a 7-2 home result.

For Cardiff, head coach Jarrod Skalde was behind the bench for the first time following his period of isolation and fresh from that massive victory over Lausanne on Saturday, they couldn’t follow it up at the SAP Arena.

Mannheim dominated for large spells and this told when Luca Tosto dragged the puck away from his opponent and delivered the shot into the net past Cardiff’s Mac Carruth.

They doubled the lead a few minutes through Iskhakov’s first – a well taken hit from the Russian – and the Devils went in at the break already facing a long night.

Their fortunes didn’t get any better when Andrew Desjardins got a bit of luck when his attempt at the pass came off Carruth’s stick and ended up in the net.

Thomas Larkin added a fourth around the half hour to make the scoreline look even more one-sided, with Borna Rendulic making it five without reply.

Cardiff show there was life in them when Cole Sanford’s effort took a deflection to beat the Mannheim goalie to give them something to celebrate as the second period came to an end.

However their five-goal lead was restored as Iskhakov again struck as the home side took advantage of a turnover, leaving Taran Kozun beaten after he replaced Carruth at the interval.

Brendan Mikkelsen was on target for Cardiff’s second, combining with Brendan McNally as they found the net again.

Iskahanov had the final say with a late seventh to complete his hat-trick and wrap up another good night’s work for Pavel Gross’ side.

For the Devils, it was another stern lesson in this competition as they turn their attention to a trip to Switzerland where Lausanne will be out for revenge against them.

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