Berlin Outlasts Haching
Posted by Salman Mitha
Posted in Volleyball
Olympiahalle, Munich – After delivering a dramatic finals series last spring, the BERLIN RECYCLING Volleys and Generali Haching were back at it again as title favorites in the German Volleyball Bundesliga.
Despite the different arena, the result was the same.
Berlin were solid on the block, frustrating Haching’s attack into key errors to take a 2-0 lead in the match and then hold on 3-2 (25-22, 25-14, 23-25, 29-31, 15-10).
Editor’s Note: Berlin’s Paul Carroll and head coach Mark Lebedew and Haching’s Alexander Shafranovich spoke to us after the match to talk about the epic battle and what we can expect this season.
Other than the second set, the entire match was even and the result could have gone for either club.
Haching came into the match with new players replacing key members from last year’s team, and they made an immediate impact.
Matias Raymaekers, Konstantin Shumov and Jan-Willem Snippe all recorded a kill before the first technical timeout.
If those three can integrate into the team, and along with captain Christian Dünnes who also had a kill during the run, they will have a formidable attack.
But Berlin were not phazed. Sott Joseph Touzinsky and Aleksandar Spirovski were also ready to counter, both with an effective attack and a block that turned away Haching. It was a block that ended the close first set, 25-22.
Something happened to Haching during the break, as they came out listless in the second. Berlin jumped out to the 5-0 lead, as Haching starting to make costly errors and their block could not handle the Volleys’ Spirovski and former teammate Tomas Kmet.
Kmet recorded two kills to extend the lead to 16-9 by the second technical timeout, and they cruised to win the set 25-14.
It was back to the status quo in the third set, back-and-forth the clubs went – 11 ties until 14-14. Haching started converting their chances, thanks to Dünnes’ attack. The match was extended as Haching held on, 25-23.
Berlin and Haching took this match to another level in the 4th. Coach Mihai Paduretu’s men were able to jump out to an early lead, going up 8-4 to the first technical timeout, and even till 11-7. But Berlin was not going to let Haching take this one easily.
They fought to bring the match even at 13-13, 20-20… and then 22-22.
Haching got it to 24-22 and were poised to take it with set point. But again, Berlin probably had a flight to catch and wanted it over, tying it at 24-24.
And this continued till 29-29, until Haching finally survived and won 31-29.
The crowd of 3,900 and the Haching faithful started to believe their team could come back and take this one.
In the fifth set till 15, Raymaekers started with two kills and it seemed the clubs will battle it out again till the end. But Berlin had a familiar weapon. Former Haching player Paul Carroll took control. He recorded four kills, each time to extend the Volleys’ lead, and finally to earn match point.
The Berlin Block did the rest, and the match was over with a 15-10 set win.
If fans want more of this, or if you missed out, have no fear, the wait won’t be long. The clubs will meet again on November 7th in the German domestic cup competition, the DVV Pokal, at the Generali Sport Arena.
Both clubs will play in the CEV Champions League this week. Haching will travel to take on ACH Volley Ljubljana on Wednesday, while Berlin will host Czech champions Jihostroj Ceske Budejovice on Thursday.
Both teams return to DVL action on Saturday, Haching (1-1) will remain on the road and visit CV Mitteldeutschland. After taking on title favorites and winning both games, Berlin (2-0) will host Moerser SC who were also in the playoffs last year.
Stay tuned for more on Generali Haching, DVL and CEV on Twitter @SportEagleTV