Hungary have won the U17 women’s European Championships for the first time, with a well-earned 11-8 victory over Spain in the gold medal match.
Throughout the tournament, Hungary consistently demonstrated their superiority over all their opponents, and the final was no exception. Spain put up a commendable performance in the ultimate match, but it was Hungary who ultimately deservedly emerged as the champions.
Hungary’s triumph in securing their first U17 women’s title mirrors the success of their male counterparts who claimed gold in Belgrade in 2008.
Although this marks Hungary’s inaugural gold at the U17 level, their women’s 2006 age-group has consistently demonstrated dominance over the past two years. With the addition of the U17 European Championship gold medal to their collection, they have previously achieved victory in the U15 European Championship (Szentes 2021) and the U16 World Championship (Larissa 2022).
Before the final, Greece claimed the bronze medal in a closely contested encounter, prevailing with a narrow 7-6 victory over Italy. The teams showed remarkable parity on the scoreboard, and Greece’s triumph marks their fifth podium finish in the seven U17 women’s competitions held since 2011.
The Netherlands secured a 5th-place finish in Manisa after a well-earned victory over Israel, with a final score of 6-4. Meanwhile, Croatia attained the 7th position, surpassing Turkiye 12-10, with both teams achieving their highest-ever placement at this age-group.
Day 8, U17 Women’s European Championships, Manisa, Turkiye
Hungary emerged as the well-deserved champions of the U17 European Championships in Manisa, securing a comprehensive 11-8 victory over Spain in the final.
The match showcased a valiant effort from Spain, demonstrating a significant improvement from their previous encounter with Hungary in the preliminary round. However, despite the improvements from the Spaniards, they had to settle for silver.
Spain started strongly, taking the lead on three occasions in the first half. The teams entered the intermission with a balanced scoreline of 3-3. However, Hungary displayed their dominance in the third period, unleashing a formidable onslaught with four consecutive goals to establish a three-goal lead (8-4). Panna Tiba’s perfectly placed lob and Laura Kardos’ close-range shot were followed by two crucial strikes from Kata Hajdu, firmly putting Hungary in control of the game. Although Spain continued to chip away, they were unable to regain the momentum required to alter the outcome.
Kata Hajdu scored four goals in the final for the Magyars, three of which came from the 5m penalty line. Martina Claveria also contributed four goals for the Spanish.
Greece secured the bronze medal with a narrow 7-6 victory over Italy in a tightly contested match. Throughout the game, Greece appeared to have a slight edge and proved to be the more determined team, ultimately deserving their podium finish. While Italy scored the opening goal early in the game, their lead lasted merely forty seconds. After a goalless spell of nine minutes, Greece surged ahead in the third period with goals from Drakotou and Galanopoulou, creating a 6-3 advantage. The Setterosa fought back admirably to level the score, but Greece responded with two crucial goals that Italy couldn’t match. Despite Italy’s efforts to narrow the gap in the last two minutes and hitting the woodwork twice in the closing moments, Greece exhibited remarkable composure to secure the victory to claim the bronze medal.
The Netherlands secured a 5th place finish in Manisa today, replicating their achievement from two years ago in Sibenik, with a well-earned 6-4 victory over Israel. Just as in the preliminary round, the Dutch managed to secure a two-goal margin win against Israel, although this time in a lower-scoring contest. After a goalless first eight minutes, the Netherlands showed a strong finish to the second quarter, gaining the initiative. While Israel made a comeback in the third quarter, two quick goals from Kiara Heerink and Meinke Van der Schaaf extended the Dutch lead to three goals (6-3), a deficit that proved insurmountable for Israel.
In the seventh place game, Croatia achieved their highest ever finish at a U17 women’s event by defeating the hosts, Turkiye, with a final score of 12-10. Croatia started strongly, with Jelena Butic and Ria Glas each scoring two goals in the first period, leading to a 4-0 advantage after eight minutes. Despite the hosts’ efforts to stage a comeback and level the score at 8-8 before the end of the third quarter, thanks to crucial goals from Hanzade Dabbag, it was the goals scored in the final period that proved most decisive. Neli Jankovic restored Croatia’s lead with the first attack of the fourth quarter, and two more goals without reply from Alamat and Stipanov sealed the victory for Croatia, putting an end to any hopes of a Turkish comeback. The hosts, like their counterparts, also secured a record-high finish at this level of competition.
Gold medal match
Spain 8 – 11 Hungary (1-1, 2-2, 3-6, 2-2)
Bronze medal match
Greece 7 – 6 Italy (3-2, 0-1, 2-2, 2-1)
5th Place Final
Israel 4 – 6 Netherlands (0-0, 1-3, 2-1, 1-2)
7th Place Final
Croatia 12 – 10 Turkiye (4-0, 3-4, 1-4, 4-2)