Regional League

Partizan stun European champion, Mornar triumphant in Split derby

PHOTO: FB/VK Partizan

Partizan made a huge surprise in the Round 14 of the Regional league. Black and whites beat European champion, Jug – 16:14 (5: 2, 3: 4, 5: 4, 3: 4) and stayed on the course for a place in the Final four.This was the sixth victory in the regional competition for Partizan and now Serbian champions have a point less than fourth-placed Mornar from Split.

Partizan has once again shown that it has a very talented new generation of players who, in spite all the financial and organizational problems, can compete with the best. And tonight Radomir Drasovic and Nikola Lukic were fantastic with five goals each, while Nikola Jaksic scored three times. Felipe Perrone and Paulo Obradovic with the three goals each were the best scorers for Jug.

Highly motivated Partizan brilliantly opened the game tonight. Thanks to Radomir Drasovic who scored two goals and Ognjen Stojanovic, after only three minutes of the game, Serbian champion led with 3: 0

Apparently, the coach of Partizan Zoran Milenkovic made a good scouting assessment and preparation for the match against European champion, as the black-and-white had the lead until the final whistle.

In the second quarter, Partizan quickly got to a huge 6:2 lead. But then Jug finally woke up, started to play tougher and somehow started to close the gap. And to some extent, it succeeded until the end of the second quarter, primarily due to Felipe Perrone.

Right at the beginning of the third period, the guests got to a just one goal deficit (8-7), but then Drasovic again took matters into his own hands. A little bit later, Nikola Lukic also seemed all fired up and black-and-white again reached the big four-goal lead (12:8) in the finish of the third period.

Partizan was a little bit nervous in the final match, Jug knew how to materialize that fact and once again put some pressure on the hosts. But, Drašović rejected visiting team last attempt of a comeback and ensured one of the biggest wins in the last three seasons.

Jadran from Herceg Novi won a big Montenegro derby at Budva – 10:6. Budva team was hit by injuries, Zdravko Radic and Boris Popovic couldn’t play at his game. So, without them, Budva was no match for Jadran in this important local clash. Now, Jadran is a step closer to winning the second place and going to Final four, which was one of the primary targets at the start of the season.

Budva took the lead at the beginning of the game, Petar Cetkovic found the net, but that was all a home team could do in this derby. After that Jadran totally took the control of the game nad never looked back.

Truth be told, Budva came close a couple of times when they were trailing just by one goal, but when Vladimir Gojkovic’s team took a three-goal lead in the third period, there was no dilemma.
Zeljko Kovacic and Djuro Radovic both scored two goals apiece for Jadran, just like Savo Cetkovic nad Bogdan Djurdjic for Budva.

Friday was obviosly a night for local derbies. So we also had a clash of two clubs from Split, and visiting Mornar won against Jadran 9-7. It was the second win for Mornar against city rival this season.

A solid crowd turned up for this game at Jadran’s Poljud pool, and the home team really started well. Jadran had a 4-2 lead. But Mornar goalkeeper Marin Sparada had a great night. He had some miraculous saves and that gave confidence to the rest of the team. Mornar overturned the result.

At the start of the third period Antonio Buha scored an equalizing goal (4-4), Ante Viskovic gave the advantage back to Jadran, but before the end of this quarter visitors finally took the lead. Two consecutive goals from Antun Goreta were enough to secure a 7-5 lead to Mornar.

Jadran never made it back, because of Mornar solid defense, and on the other side of the pool, Slavko Calic hit the net a minute before the end of the game (9:6). At that moment the winner was definitely decided.

This was a fourth consecutive win for Mornar who stayed on the course for Final four, while Jadran stayed almost bottom of the table. Only Vojvodina is a worse team at this moment in the Regional league.

Mladost had an easy job in Rijeka against Primorje and won 9-4 to regain the third place in the regional standings. It was a first win for Mladost after two consecutive defeats. The Frogs started furiously and at the start of the secong period, away team was leading 5-0! It was a period of pure dominance of Andrija Vlahovic. It was a matter of routine for Mladost in the second half. Their victory never came to question.

Regional league
Round 14

Friday, February 24:
Budva – Jadran HN 6-10 (1-3, 3-3, 1-2, 1-2)

Budva: Cetkovic 2, Djurdjic 2, Manojlovic, Cetkovic
Jadran HN: Kovacic 2, Radovic 2, Popadic, Vidovic, Markulov, Petkovic, Spajic, Pjesivac

Jadran Split – Mornar 7-9 (3-1, 1-2, 1-3, 2-3)
Jadran Split: Vasic 2, Popovic, Kragic, Viskovic, Gluhaic
Mornar: Goreta 3, Krekovic, Calic, Rodin, Buha, Duzevic, Erak

Saturday, February 25:
Partizan – Jug 16-14 (5-2, 3-4, 5-4, 3-4)

Partizan: Drasovic 5, Lukic 5, Jaksic 3, Stojanovic 2, Radojevic
Jug: Fatovic, Perrone 3, Obradovic 3, Loncar, Jokovic, Ivankovic, Benic, Vrlic

Primorje – Mladost 4-9 (0-4, 1-2, 1-1, 2-2)
Primorje: Tkac 2, Vrlic, Vukicevic
Mladost: Vlahovic, Basic, Bukic, Milakovic, Zovic, Brlecic, Paskvalin

Standings
1. Jug 36 pts
2. Jadran HN 28
3. Mladost 22
4. Mornar 20
5. Partizan 19
6. Primorje 14
7. Budva 10
8. Jadran ST 7
9. Vojvodina 6

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