There were no matches in the Regional League last weekend. Serbian, Croatian and Montenegrin clubs played at final tournaments of their respective national cups. Jadran Herceg Novi (Montenegro) and Jug (Croatia) successfully defended the trophies that they took last year. The Serbian cup was won by Sabac.
Sabac made history by winning the national cup of Serbia. Sabac hadn’t clinched any trophy in national competitions before this season’s cup, but this achievement isn’t a big surprise. The club was founded in 1990. It was an amateur team for years. A few seasons ago, the club started “to grow” step-by-step. It played better and better from season to season.Sabac composed a pretty good squad last summer. A few very talented players moved from Partizan to Sabac, while the biggest reinforcement was Gojko Pijetlovic, an experienced goalkeeper of the national team of Serbia.
The Final Four was played in Zrenjanin. In the semifinals, Sabac defeated Partizan for the 3rd time in a row (after wins in the 2017/18 Serbian league and in this season Regional League). Sabac recorded 14:10 victory and downed Partizan from the throne. Partizan, which won 26 national cups in a total, clinched the trophy in the last 4 editions (2014 – 2017).
Sabac faced KVK Radnicki Kragujevac in the final. KVK Radnicki was founded in 2016, after 2013 Euro Cup winner VK Radnicki, had been extinguished.
KVK Radnicki upset Red Star a ten days ago in the quarterfinals, while it beat Nais (8:5) in the semifinals.
The first two quarters of the final game were balanced. At halftime, Sabac and Radnicki were tied (4:4). Sabac water polo players staged a 4:0 rush for an 8:4 lead, but Radnicki managed to come close (8:7 and 9:8). Toholj hit the back of the net for 10:8 with 81 seconds to go. Radnicki answered with a goal, but there was no time for a turn.
Sabac 10:9 Radnički
Sabac: Vucinic 4, Rogac 2, Markovic , Toholj , Velkic, Lukic.
KVK Radnicki: Gusarov 4, Zulum 3, Radovanlija, Manic.
Partizan 10:14 Sabac
(2:5, 4:4, 3:4, 1:1)
Partizan: Kasum 4, Andrejevic 2, Barac, Radanovic, Korolija, Tomic.
Sabac: Velkic 3, Jankovic 3, Lukic 2, Markovic 2, Bolovic, Ilic.
Radnicki 8:5 Nais
(0:0, 3:3, 2:0, 3:2)
KVK Radnicki: Guillame 2, Ganic 2, Gusarov 2, Radovanlija, Vasic.
Nais: Silj 3, Kosic, Budurin.
The Croatian clubs fought a battle for the national Cup in Dubrovnik. Home team Jug demolished Mornar (20:5) in the semifinals, while Mladost defeated Jadran Split in a penalty shootout (17:16).
The encounter between Jug and Mladost in the final offered a lot of twists and turns. The hosts were 2 goals ahead In the middle of the second quarter (5:3), but Mladost came back with three straight goals for a 6:5 advantage in the finish of the third period. A Russian Danil Merkulov equalized 0.01 from the end of the 3rd period and the teams entered the last period from the same starting point (6:6). There were a lot of exclusions in the fourth quarter, but spectators saw only one goal. Loren Fatovic scored a winner from a penalty shot, and Jug climbed its 14th Croatian cup thanks to a narrow 7:6 win.
Mladost 7:8 Jug
(0:0, 2:4, 4:2, 1:2)
HAVK Mladost:Milos 3, Cuk 1, Lazić, Buljubasic, Radu.
Jug: Jokovic 3, Fatovic 2, Benic, Loncar, Merkulov.
Jadran S 16:17 Mladost
(2:3, 2:3, 3:3, 4:2 – 5:6 pso)
Jadran Split: Delic 3, Viskovic 2, Z. Butic, Krapic, Zovic, Setka, Popovic, Milradovic.
HAVK Mladost: Kharkov 2, Milos 2, Buljubasic 2, Cagalj, Radalj, Cuk, Petkovic, Herceg.
Jug 20:5 Mornar
(5:1, 3:2, 5:1, 6:1)
Jug:Fatovic 4, Lozina 3, Merkulov 3, Stahor 3, Benic, Papanastasiou 2, Zuvela, Jokovic, Culina.
Mornar: R. Akrap 2, M. Vrdoljak 2, Calic.
The Final Four of the national cup of Montenegro was held in Niksic. There weren’t excitements, as Jadran Herceg Novi retained the trophy with convincing wins. The best Montenegrin club defeated Primorac (13:6) in the semifinal. Jadran rolled past Budva in the final game (13:3).
Jadran HN 13:3 Budva
(4:0, 4:2, 2:1, 3:0)
Jadran Carine Herceg Novi: Dj. Radovic 3, Averka 3, Obradovic 2, Banicevic, Draskovic, M. Petkovic, Vucurovic, Mijuskovic.
Budva: Bogdanovic , Cetkovic, Brguljan.
Budva 10:5 Cattaro
(2:0, 2:2, 1:2, 5:1)
Budva: M. Mitrovic 3, Lobov 2, Danilovic 2, Cetkovic, Brguljan, Bogdanovic.
VA Cattaro: D. Markovic 2, Mrsic, Vujovic, Milas.
Jadran HN 13:6 Primorac
(3:1, 5:2, 2:1, 3:2)
Jadran:Averka 3, Spaic 3, Banicevic 2, Dj. Radovic 2, D. Draskovic, M. Petkovic.
Primorac: Gopcevic 2, Crepulja, V. Draskovic, Ivankovic, Krijestorac.