Ikast booked a quarter-final ticket, Borussia new group leader
Only two home sides took a win in reverse fixtures of the EHF European League Women, Borussia and Ikast, and only one side got their revenge, Neptunes de Nantes.
Ikast are the only team in the competition with all four wins and booked a quarter-final spot. BV Borussia 09 Dortmund leapfrogged Besancon Feminin and took over 1st place in group A with Siófok in 2nd place after their third consecutive win. Nantes stepped up a gear and beat Fana with the help of Adrianna Placzek, while Nyköbing beat Podravka again and eliminated them from the quarter-final race.
Borussia beat Besancon Feminin for the second time in only two weeks with true teamwork to take charge of Group A. The home team opened with a 5-0 run leaving their opponents without a goal for nine minutes. Besancon could not recover from this deficit and kept having problems in attack. Adding to their problems were 10 saves at 40% save efficiency by Yara Ten Holte.
A ten-goal lead was hit in the 35th minute of the game when Anna-Lena Hausherr netted for 19:9. Camille Aoustin and Ivana Dezic were the most efficient goal scorers for Besanscon, but they could not narrow the gap below 10. Besancon will need to find a new solution ahead of their important match against Siófok.
Siófok extended their winning streak to three with a stellar performance by Nikoletta Papp ending Molde's chances of progressing further in the competition. After a 3:0 start by the Hungarians, it was Thale Delia Rushfeldt who returned Molde to life, with two straight goals as the home team did not let go easily and were level for the first 15 minutes of the game.
However, a 3-0 series near the end of the first half stretched the gap and allowed Siófok to get a six-goal lead at half-time. In the second half good defence movement and fast transition produced four quick goals for Molde, closing the gap to 18:20. Uros Brgear called for a time-out, put new tactics for the attack and shifted the defence from 6-0 to 5-1. This resulted in a new series of goals for a five-goal lead which Molde held almost until the final whistle.
It was probably our best game in the group stage so far. At the break, I wasn't sure if we could keep it up. Besancon brought a lot of hustle and bustle into the game, but we stayed calm. It looks quite good now for reaching the quarterfinals.
The last 15 min of the 1st half killed our hope to score points. Our attitude changed to the better after the break and that nearly gave us a possibility to come back. We will keep on fighting even if our hope of advancing is lost.
Neptunes de Nantes redeemed themselves in front of their fans as they beat Fana after a two-goal defeat two weeks ago to secure second place in the group. Aside from a 1:0 lead at the very start of the match, Fana trailed throughout the match. In the first half, Fana pushed hard and kept the match close, but their lack of experience came to light in the second half.
At the start of the second half, GK Adrianna Placzek held Fana scoreless and helped her team build a quick 18:12 lead. After a six-goal outing in the first half, Sara Berg continued on the same path and finished the game with 11 goals. Despite her top performance it was not enough for Fana who remain at the bottom of the group with two points.
Ikast Handbold cruised to their fourth consecutive win to seal a quarter-finals appearance. Ikast got off to a good start and were in the lead by three early, but they went down two players and could not restrain Mosonmagyarovari. The Hungarian team equalised and then with an Ines Ivancok goal took a short lead (10:9). Ikast, one of the most efficient teams of the competition, however went on a 5-0 run to take the lead at half-time.
Mosonmagyarovari gave one last push in the second half to close the lead to one (21:22), but goalkeeper Jessica Ryde entered the game and saved four attempts, giving her team some room to breathe. Mosonmagyarovari's shifting defence helped mount a comeback in the closing minutes, but the Danish side kept their heads high and held on for win.
Podravka Vegeta suffered a fourth consecutive defeat in the EHF European League Women and have lost all chances for progressing further. It was almost the same end result as their first match two weeks ago, but Podravka initially kept the contest close for 25 minutes. However, after Amra Pandža scored to make it 10:10, Podravka became nervous on the court with hasty attacks producing technical errors to allow Nyköbing to go on a 5-0 goal run to take control of the match
Cecille Greve had a good day at the office with 12 saves and Elma Halicevic scored seven goals for Nyköbing. Larissa Kalaus led Podravka with 7 goals.
I think our first half was good. We had good control and our goalkeeper played well. In the second half, however, we made too many mistakes. You can't win a game with 20 mistakes.