Odense win Scandinavian derby; Buducnost first to overthrow Metz
Odense HC took a major step towards the Women’s EHF Champions League 2018/19 Main Round, but they had to work hard to secure their 27:23 win at home against Larvik HK. The Norwegian visitors made it considerably more challenging for their Danish opponents than in the first meeting between the two teams two weeks ago, though Odense were the stronger side in the end.
In the second Group A clash on Sunday, there was a sense of revenge, as Buducnost wanted to take the two points to make up for their defeat in Metz two weeks ago. After leading by up to six goals, Buducnost secured a four-goal win that signalled Metz’s first loss of the season.
• With Sunday’s win, Odense are on five points after four matches, while Larvik remain on two
• Larvik lead for parts of the first half, and Odense only decide the day’s opening Group A match towards the end
• Buducnost deliver an impressive defensive performance, preventing Metz from scoring for 16 minutes at the beginning of the second half
• Despite the defeat, Metz stay on top with five points alongside Odense, while Buducnost move up to four
Odense HC (DEN) vs Larvik HK (NOR) 27:23 (13:14)
Odense defeated Larvik for the second time in two weeks but had a considerably tougher task than in the away game, which they won 33:25. The round 4 clash on Sunday afternoon was decided only in the last minutes.
“I am satisfied with the win. I think we worked a little harder than we did when we played in Larvik. Today, Larvik came with great speed, and in the first half we had a hard time responding to this speed. We lacked a little focus. Fortunately, we turned it around and got the upper hand in the end,” said Odense coach Jan Pytlick. “I am just happy that we were able to win the match today, even though we didn’t play our best.”
Just like in the first match between the two teams, Larvik right back Mathilde Rivas Toft caused the Odense defence considerable trouble. In combination with a fine start from Guro Rundbraten in goal, Toft’s performance allowed Larvik to pull ahead 4:1. Odense worked themselves into the match and created a two-goal distance, but the visitors managed to stay in the game and lead by one at half time.
Though Odense scored the first four goals after the break, Larvik hung on, staging a comeback after the home team increased their advantage to four goals at 22:18 in the middle of the second half. However, as Freja Cohrt Kyndboel earned Odense another four-goal lead, making it 26:22 with four minutes left, the visitors were unable to respond again.
Buducnost (MNE) vs Metz Handball (FRA) 23:19 (9:10)
Just like in the first leg two weeks ago, the game was very defensive in the first minutes. Neither team could create an advantage of more than two goals, as Buducnost had the better start and led 4:2. The locals relied heavily on Milena Raicevic, who scored six in the first half alone – two-thirds of her team’s goals. Metz’s game seemed more varied, as seven players netted the first 30 minutes to give the visitors the advantage at the break, 10:9.
But Metz lost track when they came back from the dressing room. More than 15 minutes with no goals, but plenty of turnovers and missed shots, was a little too much to keep the advantage. Despite Metz keeper Ivana Kapitanovic’s saves, Buducnost took the biggest advantage of the game thanks to a goal from Marina Rajcic into the empty net (13:10).
A timeout did not do Metz any good, and the visitors had to wait for Laura Flippes to score on a fast break to finally open their account in the second half – but that was not enough to stop Buducnost’s momentum. Djurdjina Jaukovic scored her fourth goal to take her team six ahead with six minutes left to play and secure the win for the home team.