Albert Yarullin scored at 4:50 of overtime Wednesday as Russia escaped with a 3-2 victory against Slovakia in the opener at the world junior hockey championship for both teams.
Nikita Kucherov and Alexander Khokhlachyov also scored for Russia, while Andrei Vasilevski made 32 saves.
Matus Matis and Richard Mraz had the goals for Slovakia. Adam Nagy stopped 34 shots.
Slovakia tied the heavily-favoured hosts on the power play with 34 seconds left in regulation to send the game to overtime. But the Slovaks took a penalty in the extra period and Yarullin made them pay off the ensuing faceoff, blasting a one-timer from the point past Nagy.
Pool B action continues for both countries Friday with Slovakia taking on Canada and Russia meeting the U.S.
Canada leads Pool B with three points after a 9-3 win over Germany, while Russia sits second with two points for the overtime victory. Slovakia picked up one point for the OT loss and is followed in the standings by the Americans, who open their tournament on Thursday against Germany.