HSC Bad Neustadt – HC Erlangen II 25:23 (10:11).
Of all things against the table leader the Rotmilanen succeeded the first season’s victory, in the tenth attempt. A success that resulted in joyful dances on the field after this so far so messed up round. “A load off my mind”, HSC coach Frank Ihl began the press conference. Like lions his team had fought, and therefore had also deservedly won against the Bundesliga reserve.
The first five minutes were characterized by nervous actions of the opponents. Early on it became clear that the keeper Stanislaw Gorobtschuk and Michael Hassferter on the opposite side were in strong form. Mittelfranken took the lead through their left winger Tim Bauder and seemed to live up to their role as favorites after the second goal, before the Ihl proteges finally managed to score the redeeming first goal through Filip Susnjara after six minutes.
After Susnjara was also responsible for the 3:3, the HSC player inexplicably lost the courage to throw in the further course of the game. The match continued to be characterized by technical errors and poor use of opportunities. “Characteristic is our catastrophic seven-meter yield”, commented Ihl. At the score of 5:8 the favorite seemed to be able to escape, before the home seven fought back to 7:8 after goals by Franziskus Gerr and Maximilian Drude. With the break whistle and during a Unterzahlsituation Benedikt Kleinhenz was allowed to try itself then at the Siebenmeterlinie – and finally meet.
In the opening minutes of the second half, one could have gained the impression that it was not the Wannenmacher proteges who were sitting on the throne of the table, but the Kurstadter… These presented themselves not only energetically, but absolutely concentrated with their throws and had besides in Gorobtschuk a team mate between the posts stand, which defused the first four throws of the guest bravouros. Felix Wolf, Drude and Gerr turned the half-time deficit into a 13:11 lead, but after Sebastian Walz scored the next goal, trouble threatened again, because now Benedikt Kleinhenz also failed on a seven-meter shot and hit the crossbar. This seemed to be bearable at first, because Wolf with a double and Kleinhenz with two successfully completed tempo counterattacks extended the lead to a respectable 17:12.
But the euphoria lasted only four minutes “in which we allowed ourselves again mistakes, which brought the opponent back into the game without need”, complained Ihl. The HC did not take long, netted four times in a row. At 17:16, the majority of the 152 spectators feared that the notorious collapse of the HSC would be heralded. But this time the nerves of the players held, especially Benjamin Herth now increasingly moved towards the circle and also successfully concluded. Because Johannes Bader, whom HC coach Tobias Wannenmacher ordered into the attack late in the game, did the same with a hat trick, the game went into crunch time at 18:18.
When at 21:21 the question of the winner was still not answered, Drude and twice Herth provided for the 24:21 celebrated by the Minuskulisse. The hosts defended the lead with fight over time. “We have shown great morale and have carried out our attacks reasonably effectively. I am pleased for the boys, who were finally rewarded for their diligence”, said Ihl.
Goals for the HSC: Felix Wolf (5), Maximilian Drude (5), Franziskus Gerr (5), Benedikt Kleinhenz (4/1), Benjamin Herth (4), Filip Susnjara (2).