Noisy-le-Sec and Montpellier qualified for the semifinals of the playoffs of the French Championship.
Noisy defeated Tourcoing in both quarterfinal matches, while the other quarterfinal encounter offered more excitement. Montpelier edged out Pays d’Aix after a penalty shootout.
Montpellier will meet Marseille in the semifinals, while Noisy will play against Strasbourg.
Pays d’Aix and Tourcoing will face off in the playoffs for 5th place.
French Championship, playoffs, quarterfinals (best-of-two)
Noisy-le-Sec – Tourcoing 15:11 (4:3, 4:2, 2:1, 5:5) – 1st leg 10:9
Noisy: Krapic 4, Bjorch 3, Peisson 2, Guerin 1, Caumette 1, Blary 1, Petkovic 1, Marzouki 1, Ait Dahmane 1.
Tourcoing: Grgurevic 6, Canonne 3, Vincourt 2.
Pays d’Aix – Montpellier 17:15 (6:3, 2:2, 3:3, 2:2, PSO 4:5) – 1st leg 10:13
Pays d’Aix: Khasz 4, Monneret 4,Popadic 2, Djerkovic 2, Dino 2, Gluhaic 2, Saux 1.
Montpellier: Kalinic 4, I.Zivkovic 3, Mustur 2, Piot 1, Vasseur 1, D. Zivkovvic 1.
Noisy-le-Sec didn’t let the visitors they could make a surprise. Noisy celebrated a 1-goal win in the first game -10:9(the Parisians even had a 5-goal lead in that game). Tourcoing fought hard in the return leg, but Noisy, led by Ivan Krapic (4 goals), Emil Bjorch (3 goals) and goalkeeper Stefan Zivojinovic (18 saves) controlled the match. The hosts’ win was never in danger. They achieved a comfortable 15:11 victory.
Pays d’Aix entered the 2nd leg as the favorite, but it had a challenging task to catch up a 3-goal deficit from the first match. The hosts erased the deficit already in the first period (6:3).
Early in the third period, Aix had a 10:5 advantage, but the hosts didn’t keep their momentum. Montpellier managed to come back and to reduce the gap. In the middle of the fourth quarter, Montpellier trailed 9:11. Gluhaic gave Aix a 12:9 lead, but 47 seconds from the end, Ilija Mustur found the net for 10:12. Just 12 seconds later, the same player committed a foul for exclusion. Djerkovic converted a man-up for 13:10 and the match entered the shootout.
The visitors had stronger nerves in the penalty thriller. They made no mistake, Pays d’Aix scored four goals in the shootout. Montpellier lost 15:17, but it advanced to the semis.