European Ultimate Championships 2019: Pre-quarters and Quarters Recap (Mixed)

Quarters are done and only four remain!

Today we saw the pre-quarter and quarterfinal rounds at the European Ultimate Championships. Semis will start tomorrow and this is what the bracket looks like:

Pre Quarters

Denmark -Switzerland

Switzerland’s coach Ron Kubalanza took the field for Switzerland’s O-line after some days on the sideline due to a calf injury. He scored on his first point out against Denmark. When his team went down in the first half Kubalanza switched to the dline and helped them get back the breaks. The Swiss forced the Danes under at the start but the athleticism of Mads Jensen and Helle Rørvang
was just too much to handle.

Denmark broke to go up 2-1 and they managed to get through the Swiss defense without taking to many risks. Switzerland’s Madeleine Koechlin switched over to the defensive side in an effort to control the downfield threat of Helle Rørvang. The matchup of these speedsters was a joy to watch.

The Danes played very good offense but also got lucky on some tipped discs in the first half.
Switzerland got a Break back after an execution error by Denmark passing into the endzone. Kubalanza shot it deep to Olga Chinina.

Switzerland had momentum and Kubalanza was also involved in the second break to get back on serve. Denmark keep their calm with a lot of the handling done by Rikke Neerup Rørvang. She also switched over from time to time to the D-line to take the Simone Vogel matchup in the handler space. Switzerland took half 8-7. Denmark got two breaks out of half with their zone defense one of them was after Jensen got a huge swatting block.

The Danish offense had an excellent second half. Sverre Stütz to Jensen was stable in Denmark’s offense and this combination ended the game at 15-13. After the game the Rørvang sisters pointed out the importance of their two breaks early in the second half. Ron Kubalanza praised the Danish offense after the game and pointed out their efficiency.

Finland – Austria

Austria took advantage of unforced mistakes by Finland early in the game to pull away with three breaks right from the start. Though they had plenty of turnovers during the game, the Austrian offensive line only got broken once. In the end a picture perfect huck from Leon Dovits to Wunderteam teammate Julia Schmeisser ended the game 13-8. After the game Finland’s Thomas Pfister blamed the lack of success for their D line to tournament fatigue.  Pfister also said the Austrian poaches were a real problem for their offensive flow.

Sweden – Czech Republic

After a sloppy start to the game by both teams Sweden took control by breaking to go ahead 7-5 and never looked back. The game ended with Sweden advancing to the quarter finals with a comfortable 15-10 win.

Italy – Ireland

In the second half of this game the mixed division saw another spirit time out. According to Ireland’s Keith Mernagh a lot of fouls were called. They had lengthy discussions where the Irish did not have the feeling the Italians listened. Their feeling that the Italians were using calls to stay in the game lead to them asking for a spirit time out. Italy’s coach presented a very different point of view that they did not make many foul calls and were accepting the amount of body contact the Irish brought. Some Italian players seemed a little overplayed since Italy is relying on a few standouts and they had to be on the field a lot during all the tight games Italy has had throughout the tournament. Ireland took advantage and scored the game winning 11-10 after Eric von Kapen hucked it to John Doherty for the win in a big upset.

Quarter Finals

Russia – Sweden

Russia got an early break in the game but Sweden had a decent start to the game with Thomas Erikkson and Annika Lindqvist standing out for the team. Russia often used Ilya Dannenberg and Toly Vasiliev as a two man show of a turn and they managed to work it in with the two of them for many breaks. Dannenberg hit Inna Pavliuchenko to make it 8-3 on a long shot to finish out a four point run for Russia.

At the moment when Lindqvist passed to Jonathan Sjögren to make it 9-5, Sjögren was involved in every score of the Swedish team. Sasha Pustovaya was a lot more involved with key throws then she was in days past, she threw a beautiful outside forehand to the endzone to make it 12-7. The female Russian star players were running ruffshot on Sweden as Dina Dumanskaia also had her most visible performance against elite competition yet.

In the last phase of the game Russia completely lost their way and Sweden got closer. Lindqvist ended a marathon point that had nine turnovers and two time outs by passing the disc to Johan Leandersson to bring the Swedes closer to 14-11. Danenberg redeemed the Russians in the end with the final goal for the win.

France – Denmark

Denmark had to play a rested French team only two hours after they had their tight game against Switzerland. France took advantage and went up 6-0 at the start. Denmark made some easy mistakes and France exploited them. Helle Rørvang for Denmark made a huge sky that lead to a 7-2 score but the athletic Danish players like Mats Jensen were severely limited by France’s defense. The French break train kept on rolling. Danish leadership tried to keep the heads of their players up and Jonas Ulrik Toftager-Oster got a poach D from the deep position in the Danish zone. This concluded in a break to make it 13-5 but this was too little too late.

France’s top players showed up to score the last points. Paul Bollion streaked deep down the sideline against a Danish deep in the zone in an undeniable way and in the very last point Ronan Bichon picked the disc up after the turn to bomb it to Alexia Chassigneux for the win.

GB – Austria

In their second meeting this week the Brits were as dominant as in their 15-2 win the first time around. At the end of Thursday’s game they let their concentration slip a little an allowed Austria 6 points before earning their spot in the semifinals.

Germany – Ireland

Ireland were no challenge for Germany after their emotional double point win against Italy. Ireland was the biggest surprise team to get to the top 8 but here they were crushed by Germany and Germany will move on to semis.

  1. Peter Jesse
    Peter Jesse

    Peter Jesse is a passionate Ultimate Player, his highlights as a player are EUC 2011, WUCC2014 #leccoed, EUC 2015. He can also be seen doing German language coverage mainly on the Austrian scene with the Autimate blog. Follow him @autimate.

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