The final series of the Croatian League playoffs have started in Dubrovnik today.
Reigning champion Jug made the first step towards the new title with a 12:9 victory over Mladost.
Croatian Championship, playoffs
Final (best-of-five), 1st game
Jug – Mladost 12:9 (4:2, 2:3, 3:2, 3:2)
Jug AO: Papanastasiou 3, Obradovic 3, Fatovic 2, Obert 1, Loncar 1, Merkulov 1, Benic 1.
Mladost: J.Vrlic 3, Radu 1, Lazic 1, Dasic 1, Bukic 1, Viskovic 1, Kharkov 1.
Jug was in front for most of the time. Mladost managed to equalize just once (1:1 in the fourth minute). Still, the visitors were coming back from time to time. Early in the second quarter, the hosts, which were led by Paulo Obradovic and Alexandros Papanastasiou, built a 3-goal advantage (5:2 and 6:3). In the final seconds of the first half, Mladost cut the deficit to one goal (5:6).
Jug re-built a 3-goal advantage in the third period (8:5 and 9:6). The rest of the game was a pretty balanced battle. In the middle of the fourth quarter, Mladost’s Josip Vrlic converted a man-up for 8:10. But, shortly after, Loren Fatovic responded with two straight goals to give Jug a safe 12:8 lead with three minutes left, and the hosts secured the victory.
The second match will be played in Zagreb on Wednesday.
For 3rd place (best-of-three), 1st game
Jadran S – Solaris (3:1, 3:2, 5:1, 0:1)
Jadran Split: Butic 2, Setka 2, Duzevic 2, Buric 1, Marinic KRagic 1, Milradovic 1, Delic 1, Zovic 1.
Solaris: Pelicaric 2, , Herceg 2, Koprcina 1.
Semifinals, 5th-8th place (best-of-two), 2nd leg
Mornar – Medvescak 19:20 (5:2, 5:7, 3:5, 3:2, PSO 3:4) – first leg 13:13
Primorje – POSK TBD
Relegation playoffs (best-of-three), 2nd match
Valis – Stari Grad 12:11 (2:2, 5:4, 1:2, 4:3) – score in the series 2:0
Valis from Valjevo defeated Stari Grad in both matches of the relegation playoffs (they recorded a 10:7 victory in Belgrade) and advanced to the Serbian Super League for the first time in the club’s history. Besides Valis, Proleter Zrenjanin, which won 1st place in the A1 League (second-tier competition), qualified for the Super League.
Composition of the Serbian Championship in the season 2021/22: Radnicki, Novi Beograd, Crvena Zvezda, Sabac, Vojvodina, Partizan, Zemun, Nais, Proleter, Valis.