The finals of the playoffs of the Italian League started with a little bit surprising result.
Brescia defeated Pro Recco 9:8 in the game played in Recco’s pool “Punta Sant’Anna”. The second match of the series (best-of-five) will be played in the same venue tomorrow.
Pro Recco – Brescia 8:9 (2:1, 2:2, 3:4, 1:2)
Pro Recco: Figlioli 2, Echenique 2, Di Fulvio 1, Ivovic 1, Aicardi 1, Luongo 1.
Brescia: Vlachopoulos 4, Dolce 1. Alesiani 1,Lazic 1, Renzuto 1, Nikolaidis 1
Today’s match was the second encounter between Pro Recco and Brescia this season. Recco defeated Brescia in an extraordinary final of the Italian Cup two weeks ago. Recco had a 7-goal lead (8:1, 10:3), Brescia started coming back, but Recco saved the win (11:10).
The game played today was completely different – it was a hard battle, but Recco led for most of the time. Still, the Italian champion suffered the first loss in all competitions this season.
Recco opened the match with a 2:0 lead. In the middle of the second quarter, the hosts had a 3:1 advantage. Brescia equalized 44 seconds before halftime, but Echenique replied immediately and Recco entered the second half with a 4:3 advantage.
The teams were neck throughout the third period. Brescia equalized three times (4:4, 5:5, 6:6). However, shortly after each of the three goals, Recco answered and went in front. Still, Brescia’s Vlachopoulos closed the first period with a goal from a penalty shot, and the sides were tied at 7:7 before the final eight minutes.
In the 26th minute, Figlioli converted a penalty to give the hosts an 8:7 lead. But, Brescia had the last laugh. Four minutes before the end, Dolce leveled at 8:8. Just 46 seconds later, Angelos Vlachopoulos scored his fourth goal (this time with an extra player) and Brescia went in front for the first time (9:8). Recco had no response. The reigning champion even had a 6 on 5 in the last attack (50 seconds before the buzzer). Still, they didn’t score and the visitors recorded a win.
A man-up conversion was one of the crucial factors in the first match. Pro Recco had a very poor percentage of extra player shots (1/11). On the other side, Brescia scored five goals with a power-play advantage (5/9).
Savona-Telimar 8:5 (2:2, 2:2, 1:1, 3:0)
Savona: Patchaliev 3, Vuskovic 1, Molina 1, Rizzo 1, Bruni 1, Fondelli 1.
Telimar: Del Basso 2, Lo Cascio 1, Damonte 1, Migliaccio 1.
Savona defeated Telimar in the first game of the playoffs for 3rd place. After three balanced quarters, Savona dominated the fourth period, and secured a solid 8:5 victory.