Last year’s EUCF bronze medalists knocked out in the game to go, Cosmo to enter the European elite
September 3, 2019 by Ráchel Tošnerová in News, Recap with 0 comments
TRNAVA, SLOVAKIA – For the Eastern women, the EUCR was only two days. Pool play played out on Saturday which left four teams in the running for three spots to the EUCF on Sunday.
Pool A was dominated by the young Cosmo (Maribor, Slovenia). They began strong against the experienced Troubles (Warsaw, Poland), slowly increasing their lead to eventually take the game 15-12. After taking down the strongest opponent in the pool, Cosmo’s coach Jernej Mihelač made sure there were no surprises. Cosmo went on to beat Mantis (Vienna, Austria) 15-10 and Dyki Krali (Kiev, Ukraine) 15-13 without making their power line tired. Troubles were the second team from this pool to secure their place in the semis, beating Mantis 15-10 and Dyki Krali 15-13.
In Pool B, 3SB (České Budějovice, Czech Republic) had to work a little harder to take the top seed. After breezing past Yellow FUJever (Prague, Czech Republic) 15-9, 3SB took on Box (Vienna, Austria). Box managed to get a couple of early breaks forcing 3SB to work their way back into the game, eventually taking it to double game point. After an uncontested defensive foul on the catch in the end zone, 3SB’s Anna Dvořáková took the disc and the 3sbeauties used their downwind advantage and scored the final point to take the pool. Both captains agreed in the spirit circle, “The game was incredibly high-spirited. So many tough decisions on the field and still both teams managed to communicate efficiently and respectfully while pushing hard and playing their best in such a tight and important game.”
The result meant that only one more spot in semis was available for the Pool B teams and Box would fight for it in the late afternoon game against Yellow FUJever. Both teams knew that the stakes were high as Box were looking to return to EUCF after coming up short in the previous two years and Yellow FUJever were trying to qualify for the first time in the team’s four‑year participation in the European Series. It is difficult to say whether it was the double game point loss or the defensive pressure of the Czechs, but Box seemed to give away the game. Yellow FUJever took the game 15-7, which earned them a chance to play for an EUCF spot on Sunday. You can watch the game on Fanseat.
The semifinals were set for Sunday with 3SB vs Troubles and Cosmo vs Yellow FUJever. With three spots on the line, winning a semi guaranteed a spot in, while losing meant playing in a game to go for bronze and a ticket to Caorle, Italy.
On Saturday night, the storm came. As the players kept waking up to the sound of thunder, it was clear in the morning that games will not be played according to the schedule. The rain stopped at around 10:30 a.m. and the organizers promptly adjusted, moving all games to astroturf at the secondary Lokomotiva stadium. With all other games canceled, both semis had to be shortened to 70 minutes and started at noon.
Cosmo took an early lead and swept over Yellow FUJever 15-6. This secured a spot for Cosmo at the EUCF, which is not just a historical success for the team itself but for Slovenian women’s ultimate, as well. Urša Jakopin of Cosmo shared her thoughts, “We weren’t sure what to expect after we saw Yellow FUjever play Box on Saturday, but we still really wanted to win. In the semis, we came out strong, kept pushing and luckily it worked out in the end. I was lucky to have played with 3sb for the past two years at EUCF and now I’m really happy my home team will get that experience, too, and I get to share it with them.”
You can relive the semifinal between 3SB and Troubles on Fanseat. Troubles started on offense and the teams traded points until 7-6, when Troubles put on a power D to take the half 8-6. Early in the second half, 3SB managed to steal one break back, but the Polish responded with creative defense, extending their lead to 12-9. As the rain started to pour on the hot astroturf, the 3SB power line came out in a zone, forcing the thus far flawless Troubles offense to errors the Czechs were longing to exploit. A few messy points and a couple of daring deep shots later, the score was tied at 12-12 as both teams found themselves just a point away from qualifying. An unfortunate throwaway by Troubles close to their own endzone sealed the deal and 3SB could celebrate themselves advancing to the EUCF for the third time in a row.
Since the top two teams were already qualified for the EUCF, and field space was limited, the gold medal game was canceled.1 This made 3SB and Cosmo joint champions of the East.
The last ticket to Caorle was on the line in the bronze medal game between Troubles and Yellow FUJever. The sun came back out and the built-up physical and mental fatigue started to settle down on the players. Yellow FUJever came out on top 12-10 in this game over the Polish powerhouse and will go to the EUCF for the first time. Ivana Sartoriusová from Yellow FUJever summarized,“We came to the game with a determination to win but knowing that it won’t be easy. I would like to highlight our team’s individual defensive efforts, which led to our breaks and excellent deep shots of our O line. We again managed to get ahead in the first half (unfortunately, not as much as in the Box game) and even though the girls from Troubles pushed back hard and put on incredible pressure in the second half, managing to almost close the gap, we kept the lead until the end. I think I speak for the whole team when I say we are very excited about our premiere at EUCF!”
The final ranking:
1/2. Cosmo (Maribor, Slovenia) – Qualified for EUCF
1/2. 3sb (České Budějovice, Czech Republic) – Qualified for EUCF
3. Yellow FUJever (Prague, Czech Republic) – Qualified for EUCF
4. Troubles (Warsaw, Poland)
5.-8. Box (Vienna, Austria), Mantis (Vienna, Austria), Dyki Krali (Kyiv, Ukraine), Flowers (Wroclaw, Poland)
All the games from 5-8 were also canceled ↩