Read the full story on SportsLook - Nikko Defeats Tohoku in All-Japan Ice Hockey Championship Final
Sota Isogai and Maito Omuku scored third-period goals on Sunday, December 10 to lead the Nikko Ice Bucks to a 4-2 win over the Tohoku Free Blades in the final of the All-Japan Ice Hockey Championship.
Makuru Furuhashi scored in the first and second periods at Shin Yokohama Skate Center for Nikko, and Masaki Tokoro and Michihiro Kyoya responded for Tohoku.
Daichi Igari took a tripping penalty midway through the third period and Isogai capitalized with a power-play goal assisted by Yuri Terao and Hiroto Sato.
Tohoku pressed for an equalizer but Omuku sealed the game with an empty-netter in the final minute.
On Saturday, the Free Blades beat the Hokkaido Wilds 4-3 in a tourney semifinal to reach the final while the Ice Bucks edged the Red Eagles Hokkaido 2-1 in the other semifinal.
The Wilds are a team made up mostly of players from the Eastern Hokkaido Cranes, a club that was suspended from the Asia League Ice Hockey this season due to financial difficulties.
The All-Japan Ice Hockey Championship began in 1930, making the tournament one of the oldest sporting competitions in the country.
Nikko previously won the tournament in 2015 and 2019. And the team also won the championship four times in the 1950s and '60s when it was known as Furukawa Electric Tochigi.
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Author: Jim Armstrong
The author is a longtime journalist who has covered sports in Japan for over 25 years. You can find his articles on SportsLook.