Primorac advanced to the final of the Montenegrin League playoffs. Radnicki secured 1st place in the regular season of the Serbian League, while Novi Beograd needed a lot of time to break Partizan. The quarterfinals of the Croatian League are near the end.
Primorac – Cattaro 13:11 (2:2, 2:1, 5:3, 4:5)
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Primorac defeated Cattaro in the last match of the semifinals of the playoffs and joined Jadran Herceg Novi in the final series.
Primorac won the first match easily (16:5). Cattaro edged out the favorite in the second match (12:11 victory after a penalty shootout) and kept its hopes alive. But, Primorac proved who the favorite was in the last game. Still, the former European champion hadn’t an easy task, although it opened the match with a 2:0 lead. Cattaro equalized in the third period (4:4, 5:5, 6:6). Primorac scored three goals in the last two and a half minutes of the quarter for a 9:6 advantage. But, Cattaro didn’t give in and managed to catch up with the rival in the middle of the fourth period (10:10). Still, Primorac produced a 3:0 series for a 13:10 lead and finally secured a spot in the final.
Ash Molthen, Dusan Matkovic and Djordjije Stanojevic scored three goals each for Primorac. Marko Mrsic netted three for Cattaro.
The series of encounters between Primorac and Jadran in the final (best-of-five) will start on April 28. Primorac will be the host in the first match.
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Partizan – Novi Beograd 7:8 (1:1, 1:3, 4:2, 1.2)
Radnički – Nais 11:4 (3:1, 2:0, 2:2, 4:1)
Vojvodina – Crvena zvezda 8:12 (1:3, 2:4, 3:4, 2:1)
Stari grad – Banjica 10:8 (1:3, 2:1, 2:1, 5:3)
Sabac – Zemun 15:8
Radnicki played without a few key players against Nais. But, a rejuvenated squad earned three points with a convincing win and cemented 1st place before the playoffs. Stefan Brankovic was the best scorer with four goals.
Novi Beograd, the host of the Champions League Final Eight, avoided a big surprise. Novi Beograd played against Partizan in the pool Banjica. Novi Beograd led for most of the time and even had a 3-goal advantage in the middle of the second period (4:1). Still, Partizan was coming back from time to time. In the 20th minute, Novi Beograd had a 6:4 advantage. But, Partizan took control after that. The hosts scored three straight goals to earn a lead (7:6 in the 25th minute). But, Novi Beograd tightened its defense in the last seven minutes and recorded a narrow 8:7 victory. Drasko Gogov led the winning side with three goals, Milos Cuk added two. Petar Jaksic and Andrej Barac were the best scorers on the home team (two goals each).
Crvena Zvezda, led by Milos Vukicevic and Ivan Basara (three goas each) defeated Vojvodina.
1 Radnicki 17 – 48
2 Novi Beograd 17 – 43
3 Crvena Zvezda 17 – 38
4 Sabac 17 – 37
5 Vojvodina 17 – 27
6 Partizan 17 – 24
7 Zemun 17 – 16
8 Nais 17 – 11
9 Stari grad 17 – 5
10 Banjica 17 – 1
Solaris – Primorje 9:10 (2:2, 3:4, 3:2, 1:2)
Mornar BS – Jadran S 7:16 (1:2, 3:5, 2:5, 1:4)
(Jug and Mladost already qualified for the semifinals)
Jadran Split made a giant step towards the semifinals of the playoffs. Jadran convincingly defeated Mornar in the Split derby – 16:7. Rino Buric led the winners with three goals.
The encounter between Solaris and Primorje offered more excitement. The match was a balanced battle, with a lot of twists and turns. Just once, the distance between the sides was two goals (Primorje had a 6:4 lead) in the second period. The rivals entered tied the final quarter (8:8). Solaris took a 9:8 lead in the 25th minute. But, Primorje responded with two goals and went in front (10:9) in the 28th minute. There were no goals in the remaining time. Eugen Koprcina (Solaris) was the best scorer. Brubnjak, Augusti, and Paparic contributed to Primorje’s win with two goals each.