Fighting for the German Cup
“Just when you thought it was safe to go and start making the place nice for the Xmas, it was off to the sports halls across Germany to battle it out one more time. Altogether there were still 12 teams hoping for a nice Xmas present in the form of a place in the final 6 qualifiers for the German Cup. Remember, there will be only 3 teams going through as Berlin as the hosts are given a free pass to the final tournament. As far as I understand, however, this might be the last time and in the future, it will be the top 4 teams that will be fighting it out.
So anyway, it was still 12 teams but it was about to be 6 before the weekend was done. Now that everyone has had a belly full of Xmas-food, presents from Santa, it is time to look at what really took place over the weekend.
TV Schriesheim – Floor Fighters Chemnitz 8:9 (ot)
If Schriesheim has had a relatively solid seasons so far, Chemnitz has had even better one. Holding places 7 and 2 respectively in the League, it was anything but a done deal as the Floor Fighters travelled to Schriesheim.
The match was tightly fought where neither team seemed to be able to pull away from the other. Nearly 200 spectators were treated to a 17 goal Xmas-feast with both teams scoring 8 times before the third period was over. In the end, it was the guests that squashed the hopes of Schriesheim as Vincent Bonifacio broke the deadlock in the third minute of the overtime.
VfL Red Hocks Kaufering – Blau-Weiß 96 Schenefeld 7:3
Kaufering has had somewhat of a disaster of a season so far. Schenefeld, on the other hand, has been undefeated so far in the northern division of the 2nd Bundesleague. As the season seems all but lost for Kaufering in regards to the 1st league, the cup seems to be the only place where they can still achieve something this season.
Perhaps this was something that was in their mind as well as they started the third period and nothing had yet happened. The game was still 1-1 until Kaufering opened the floodgates. The last 15 or so minutes of the game saw 8 games. For disappointment of the guests, 6 of them fell to the hosts. Kaufering sees to fight another day whereas Schenefeld can perhaps look forward to returning the favor in the playoffs for promotion to the 1st league.
TV Eiche Horn Bremen – ETV Piranhhas Hamburg 1:9
If Piranhhas has been struggling in the leagues as of late, they seemed to not show it. With a decisive 9:1 victory over the hosts Bremen, they are off to the quarterfinals. Judging by the results, the game was never really in question. To just add insult to injury, it was Denis Komarov from Bremen that managed to get a red card only 4 seconds before the end. Perhaps someone who was there can enlighten us more.
DJK Holzbüttgen – SC DHfK Leipzig 10:3
The team in form currently, DJK, with no losses in league or cup since their first two games in the league, their form is rivaled only by the Weißenfels. So the second league Leipzig, currently leading the southern Division, was certainly facing an uphill battle trying to secure a place in the quarters.
The match was really more even than the numbers perhaps show. Leipzig with their young squad was really taking the fight to the hosts and fighting for every ball to the end. In the end, it was the experience of DJK perhaps that got the better of the guests. Slowly but surely DJK was able to pull away and able to rest some of their first lines and give a chance to the younger players. The nearly 200 spectators got to witness a fast-paced battle between some of the best young players in Germany. Leipzig putting out no less than 5 players familiar from the U19 national team and DJK putting out some of the future hopefuls between ages of 15 and 18. In the end, it was Nils Hofferbert with his 4+1 evening that decided the game for the hosts and secured a place for them in the quarters.
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A slightly controversial moment took place during the second period as Leipzig was on a breakaway and the goalie Domenic Saurbier played the ball with his feet only to meet the legs of the forward in the process. A Penalty was awarded. As the penalty was played, Saurbier managed to cover the shot, but with later action kicked the ball himself in the net. No goal was awarded, however. According to the referees, as Saurbier did the original save, the shooter made an additional move towards the ball, therefore, forcing the goalie to try an additional save during which he kicked the ball in goal himself. As per rules, the shooter is only allowed to play the ball once and if he had not tried to play the ball the second time, no second save would have been needed and the ball would not have landed in the net. The case could probably be made both ways but in the end, it was the referees that made the call and the goal was disallowed.
Even with them out of the competition, this is definitely not the last we’ve heard of the young Leipzig-team. Mark my words.
Lumberjacks Rohrdorf – Baltic Storms 5:4 (ot)
Both of these teams could be considered outsiders for the cup-competition. Lumberjacks competing at Regionalliga level whereas Baltic Storms struggling at the wrong end of the 2nd Bundesleague. The victory in this game was sure to be the highlight of the season for either of the teams.
Sadly it was only 85 people in the hall to witness the hosts continue their cinderella-story. The game was already starting to tilt in favor of the guests when Lumberjacks turned on their magic. As the third period ended it was even and the game headed to overtime. With some 2 minutes played it did not look good for the hosts as they were awarded a 2-minute penalty. Who was to guess what happened next as only 9 seconds later they managed to break the tie with a shorthanded goal. Thus it is the Regionalleague team Rohrdorf who is just 1 more win away from a place in the coveted final4 place in Berlin.
MFBC Leipzig – UHC Sparkasse Weißenfels 5:4 (ot)
The game to see! The reigning champion meeting the undefeated. With over 400 people in the audience mostly to support their hometeam Leipzig, Weißenfels was perhaps up to a challenge they had not faced yet this season.
True to their form, Weißenfels was the team to kick off the scoring and it was all looking good for them as they were already up by 3 in the game before the hosts were able to get on the sheets. 1-3 for the guests as the first period ended. Nothing much seemed to change in the second as the teams traded goals and went to the last break with 2-4 for the UHC.
As the third period started it was Leipzig that was able to cut down on the lead with less than 2 minutes played. In the end, it was just over 1 minute to play as the national-team player Erik Schuschwary pulled the hosts even and forced an overtime.
Even the overtime did not seem to be able to separate the two. With only a minute and a half to play, it was Ville Pousi that took on the responsibility and scored the overtime winner. With that goal, it was decided that the currently undefeated team in the league Weißenfels was to miss the Final4 for the first time in a long time.
Here are the upcoming matches for the last qualifier round. The games will be played on the weekend of 18.-19.1.2020.
Rohrdorf – Chemnitz
Kaufering – Holzbüttgen
Leipzig – Hamburg
Now it is back to the Finnish Xmas meals I have prepared here. I wish you all a Merry Xmas and happy new year. I will return back to writing again after the weekend of 11.-12.2020 as the 1st Bundesleague will return from their holidays. There are already some exciting match-ups coming….until then! Take care…and spend some time with the family as well and not only in the sport halls! 🙂
Kimmo Vallema blogs about his floorball experiences in Germany. Want to know more about him? Click here to read his introduction article.