The last big match of the Champions League group stage produced a lot of excitement, and the home team emerged as a winner.
Pro Recco narrowly beat Olympiacos 10:9 in the 14th round and secured 2nd place in Group B, while Olympiacos stayed in position 3. Recco was four goals down in the second quarter (3:7), but came back into the match and collected the points.
That means that Recco avoided a clash with the host of the Final Eight in the quarterfinals. Olympiacos will play against Novi Beograd on the opening day of the Final Eight. But, even Pro Recco will not have an easy task,. The reigning champion’s rival in the quarterfinals will be Ferencvaros.
Anyway, the clash between Olympiacos and Novi Beograd will be the highlight of the opening day of the Final Eight.
Pairs of the quarterfinals: QF1: Barceloneta – Jug, QF2: Pro Recco – Ferencvaros, QF 3 Olympiacos – Novi Beograd, QF 4: Vouliagmeni – Brescia.
Semifinals:winners QF1 – QF3, winners QF2 – QF4.
As for the other matches of Round 14 in Group A, Barceloneta easily beat Dinamo Tbilisi 13:6 and confirmed 1st place in the group.
Radnicki beat Vouliagmeni in Greece 10:9 and said goodbye to the season well after a lot of ups and downs. Vouliagmeni will continue preparing for the F8.
Jadran Split defeated Waspo 98 Hannover 12:8.
2022/23 Champions League Day 14, Group A
Pro Recco – Olympiacos 10:9 (3:5, 2:2, 3:0,2:2)
Pro Recco: Del Lungo, Di Fulvio 1, Zalanki 3, Cannella, Younger, Fondelli, N.Presciutti, Echenique 3, Iocchi Gratta 2, Velotto, Loncar, Hallock. Head coach: Sukno.
Olympiacos: Bijac, Gkillas, Vamos 2, Genidounias, Fountoulis 2, Gouvis 1, Dervisis 1, Buslje, Mourikis, Filipovic 1, Dimou 2, Papanastasiou, Zerdevas. Head coach: Milanovic.
Recco’s head coach Sandro Sukno fielded the roster without Recco’s most experienced players. Captain Ivovic, Aicardi, and Figlioli were missing. As for Olympiacos all of the aces started the match.
Olympiacos dictated the pace in the first half and let Recco equalize just twice (1:1, 2:2). In the first eight minutes, the visitors earned a two-goal lead (4:2 and 5:3). The Greeks kept momentum after the first break. In the middle of the quarter, they went to “+4”. Marton Vamos scored from a counter-attack. Less than a minute after, Dimitrios Dimou scored with an extra man and Olympiacos earned a 7:3 lead. Olympiacos was on a good way to reaching the objective in this match – the Greeks needed a win to climb to 2nd place, while Recco had to win one point to stay where it was.
But, Recco, with the help of its supporters in the packed stands of the outdoor Punta Sant’Anna, managed to come back. Cannella scored the first goal for Recco in the second quarter. It happened two minutes before the middle break. Shortly after, Gonzalo Echenique found the net and the hosts trailed by two goals at halftime (5:7).
Echenique continued its series with two goals in the first 83 seconds of the second half. He leveled at 7:7 from a counter-attack. After that, there were no goals for a while. Matteo Iocchi Gratta broke the deadlock. A minute and 38 seconds before the last break, he scored for 8:7 – Recco took the lead for the first time in the match.
In the first minute of the fourth quarter, Olympiacos left without two aces. Filipovic was red-carded (exclusion with substitution), and 20 seconds later, ANdro Nuslje committed his third personal foul. These two events affected Olympiacos’ play.
Pro Recco’s defense was excellent after it conceded 7th goal in the second quarter. The hosts didn’t let Olympiacos create many opportunities, and goalkeeper Luongo was up to the task, too. The Greeks’ goalless phase lasted for almost 14 minutes. It was ended by Ioannis Fountoulis, who scored from the deep right and leveled at 8:8. But Gergo Zalanki replied immediately. Dimou converted a man-up for 9:9 in the 30th minute and the big battle continued.
Francesco di Fulvio put an end to the contest. Di Fulvio found the net fifty seconds before the end after a long pass from Echenique. Recco went to 10:9 and it was clear that it couldn’t lose this game and 2nd place.
Barceloneta – Dinamo T 13:6 (2:1, 2:1, 6:2, 3:2)
Barceloneta: Aguuirre, Famera, Paul 1, Munarriz 2, De Toro, Larumbe 2, Pavillard 1, Fernandez 1, Tahull, Perrone 2, Biel 2, Bustos 2, Porter. Head coach: Fatovic.
Dinamo Tbilisi: Razmadze, Meskhi, Akhvlediani 1, Dzikhtsiarenka, Tkeshelashvili 1, Vlahovic, Jakhaia 1, Saric, Imnaishvili, Magrekvelidze 1, Malyshau, Pjesivac 2, Gvetadze. Head coach: Stanojevic.
Barceloneta started slowly, and Dinamo didn’t surrender easily. The hosts took a 1:0 lead in the 3rd minute. Barceloneta got on the scoresheet only in the 6th minute, after Larumbe’s action goal for 1:1. Biel beat the buzzer to make it 2:1 before the end of the first. By the middle of the second quarter, Barceloneta earned a 4:1, with two goals from Alberto Munarriz. Pjesivac ended the Spaniards’ series, so Dinamo trailed 2:4 at halftime. However, Barceloneta dominated in the third quarter and secured a comfortable win before the final eight minutes
Vouliagmeni – Radnicki 9:10 (3:2, 1:2, 4:3, 1:3)
Vouliagmeni: Tzortzatos, Almyras, Kastrinakis 2, Kalogeropoulos 3, Troulos 2, Nikolaidis 1, Papasifakis, Woodhead, Alafragkis, Kapotsis, Kourovanis 1, Farmer, Andreadis. Head coach: Vujasinovic.
Radnicki: Dobozanov, Brankovic, Stanojevic 2, Jankovic, Cuk, Gavrilovic 3, Panic, Antic, Pljevancic, Kojic 3, Lukic 2, Poznanovic, Todorovski. Head coach: Stevanovic.
The game in the outdoor pool in Laimos was Vouliagmeni’s last preparation for the Final Eight, while Radnicki finished the season with this match.
The Serbian team, which played without goal-getter Aleksa Ukropina, and injured center-forward Josip Vrlic, found the motivation to finish the season with a good performance. Radnicki proved it could enter the battle for the Final Eight, but some dropped points (including two in the first match against Vouliagmeni) stopped them on their way to the F8.
There were several twists and turns in the first three quarters, but the distance was never bigger than two goals until the dying seconds of the third quarter. Nine seconds before the end, Troulos scored from a penalty shot and Vouliagmeni gained an 8:6 lead. But, Radnicki earned a penalty shot just a second before the end of the third period. Nikola Lukic sent the ball into the net for 8:9.
The Serbs made a turn in the last quarter. Radnicki opened the fourth period with three goals and built a 10:8 lead (30th minute). The hosts cut the deficit after Radnicki’s 10th goal, but they failed to equalize.
Jadran S – Waspo 98 Hannover 12:8 (3:1, 4:5 4:1, 1:1)
Jadran Split: Marcelic, Buric 2, Marinic Kragic 3, Cagalj 1, Butic 1, Zovic , Bukic, Tomasovic 2, Delic, Dobud 1, Setka 2, Jankovic, Djula. Head coach: Marelja.
Waspo 98 Hannover: Goetz, Corusic 1, Schipper 1, Froreich, Schuetze, Radovic 1, Lozina 1,1 Macan, Schuetze, Gansen 1, Benic 1, Basic 2, Benke. Head coach: Seehafer.
Jadran Split finished a quite sucessfull season with a solid win over Waspo 98 Hannover.
The Germans scored the first goal in the game, but Jadran answered with four and earned a 4:1 lead early in the second period.But, Waspo didn’t give in, and leveled at 4:4, 5:5, 6:6 and 7:7. In the third quarter, the Croats took control, scored four goals in a row for a fine 11:7 advantage before the final quarter.
1. Barceloneta 14 games – 39 points (goal difference + 69)
2. Pro Recco 14 – 36 (+90)
3. Olympiacos 14 – 31 (+61)
4. Vouliagmeni 14 – 17 (-26)
5. Jadran 14 – 17 (+1)
6. Radnicki 14 – 15 (-35)
7. Dinamo T 14 – 6 (-85)
8. Waspo 98 Hannover 14 – 3 (-75)