On Day 4 of the Women’s European Junior Water Polo Championship, quarterfinal and 9-12 classification matches were played. Spain, Hungary, Greece, and Netherlands emerged as the semifinalists, while Slovakia and Israel triumphed over their rivals and scheduled the face-off for the 9th place.
On August 25, matches for places 9-16 will be played, while semifinal games are scheduled for August 26.
In the first quarterfinal game, Spain held off Russia, 9:8, after a magnificent comeback. Yulia Lapteva netted an opener, but Spain’s Gisella Farre quickly equalized. Russian ladies then stepped up their game and scored four unanswered goals to achieve a 5:1 lead at the end of the first half. They went on a break with the same result, as the second quarter was scoreless. After Elizaveta Ivanova raised her team’s advantage to five (6:1), Spanish squad woke up and proved it would not surrender. Five their goals followed and the teams entered the final period tied. In the crucial period, the teams were scoring one after another and the result was 8:8 with 17 seconds left on the clock. The hero of the game was Alejandra Aznar who scored four seconds before the end and brought victory to Spain. Their rival in the semifinals will be Greece.
Greece won its place in the semifinals by defeating Italy, 10:6, with no trouble. Even though Greek girls took a 2:0 lead, Italy responded promptly and tied the result (2:2). However, Greece added two more goals and went ahead 4:2. After they scored four goals in the second quarter, in which Italy was left scoreless, Greece basically eliminated all doubts about the winner. Italy was only able to decrease the difference, but it had no solution for its opponent’s game.
Hungary also triumphed without problems over Great Britain, 13:7. Hungarian girls controlled the match from the beginning and only kept increasing their advantage. The top scorers were Hungary’s Fanni Muzsnay and Great Britain’s Cecily Turner who each netted three goals.
Host Serbia was unable to exceed expectations and lost to the Netherlands, 13:6. The Dutch team quickly achieved a three-goal advantage which they preserved until the end of the first quarter (4:1). Serbia scored only once in the second quarter as well, whereas the Netherlands continuously increased the lead until the end. The Dutch clinched the victory thanks to their firm play.
Slovakia stormed past Bulgaria, 31:7, and Israel beat France, 8:2, so they will face each other to battle for the 9th place. Slovakia proved too strong for Bulgaria and dominated the entire match. Tamara Kolarova was the game’s top scorer with seven goals, while Emma Junasova added six. Bulgaria’s Hristova scored five goals.
Israel achieved a 5:0 lead in the middle of the second quarter and made it clear that it would not allow France to jeopardize their confident win. They were on point until the end of the match and eventually triumphed, 8:2.
Women’s European Junior Water Polo Championship (Novi Sad, Serbia)
Day 5 – August 24, 2017
Russia 8:9 Spain
(5:1, 0:0, 1:5, 2:3)
Great Britain 7:13 Hungary
(1:4, 2:3, 0:5, 4:1)
Greece 10:6 Italy
(4:2, 4:0, 0:2, 2:2)
Serbia 6:13 Netherlands
(1:4, 1:3, 2:4, 2:2)