KIT underwater rugby team reaches 2nd place
A 13-member team consisting of students and employees of the KIT, the University of Education, and the Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences started for the WG Karlsruhe. After the results of the previous years, the team was once again considered a co-favorite for the title.
For the Karlsruhe team, the tournament started in the preliminary round phase on Saturday morning with a match against the university team from Heidelberg. After some ball losses and a subsequent pressure phase of the Heidelberg team at their own goal, the team initially found it unexpectedly difficult to control the ball and to build up their own game. Nevertheless, the team was able to score and finish the opening game with a 2:0 score, which was not dangerous, but by no means superior.
Constance was the host opponent in the second game. The change of the playing system, which was made as a reaction to the difficulties of the first game, showed its effect. With a clearly increased offensive potential of the Karlsruhe team, the early lead was soon followed by further goals, so that finally a superior 7:0 victory could be booked.
In the next match, Karlsruhe and Darmstadt met. Some actions of the Darmstadt team, which was considered to be the most difficult opponent of the preliminary round, tested the defense, which was initially focused on the defense, again and again, but could be successfully fended off. As the game progressed, Karlsruhe gained more and more confidence and ball control in their own attacks on the opponent's basket, but were unable to score the opening goal despite having a number of top-class chances. In the end, the teams parted with a 0:0 draw after a hard-fought game.
In the last game of the preliminary round, the Karlsruhe team had to play against the Erlangen/Nuremberg/Munich team. The meanwhile well-rehearsed team from the fan city took an early lead. Lapses in concentration in this fourth game allowed the Bavarians pressure phases at their own goal, but they could not change the result. Final score 2:0.
With 10 points, a positive goal difference of 11 and without conceding a goal, the Karlsruhe team secured third place in the preliminary round table and thus direct entry into the semifinals on Sunday.
Their opponents from Würzburg had won all their games in the preliminary round. Accordingly, the Karlsruhe team looked forward to the semifinals with respect. Well rested, warmed up and prepared for the upcoming match, everyone was aware of the importance of the game. With full commitment from the first minute on, the Karlsruher were able to assert the ball sovereignty and immediately build up pressure on the opponent's goal. Then after only a few minutes the liberation blow with the 1:0 by Bernd Jahnke. Rarely could Würzburg penetrate the strong forechecking and advance to the Karlsruhe goal. However, the highly concentrated Badeners decisively thwarted each of the pressure-packed attacks. In the remaining time of the game, the ball then ran mainly fast and safely in their own ranks and found its way into the Würzburg goal two more times. With the final score of 3:0 the final was reached!
The defending champions, WG Köln/Bonn, had clearly beaten Darmstadt 8:1 in the semi-finals and were now waiting for the team from Karlsruhe as their opponents in the final.
After the first, largely balanced half of the game with beautiful but unsuccessful actions of both teams, the Karlsruhe then had to accept the 1:0 lead of the NRW'ler. But the resistance was not yet broken! Only a short time later, Steffen Schlör managed to sink the ball into the basket after an assist from Christian Prowald to equalize the score at 1:1. During the rest of regulation time, the match remained tough but fair, without either team being able to score again.
The following overtime started turbulent. For the players on both sides, the title was within their grasp due to the "golden goal" mode. Concentration and play were correspondingly high. During an attack by WG Cologne/Bonn at the Karlsruhe goal, one of the impartial players then decided on a penalty throw after a goalkeeper foul. The NRW players did not let this chance slip away: National player Markus Heckrath confidently converted the penalty against Sebastian Knott and thus brought his team the tournament victory.
In the small final, Würzburg won against Darmstadt after an exciting 1:1 in the last second. They thus secured third place ahead of the Hessians.
Special thanks to the organizers from Konstanz for the organization of the tournament! It was again a nice event with exciting games and a nice social program. The Karlsruhe team is already looking forward to next year!
For Karlsruhe played:
Olaf Normann, Maiken Günther, Sebastian Knott, Philipp Krüger, Florian Visel, Igor Shkarban, Jannik Lex, Bernhard Jahnke, Marcel Sattler, Christian Prowald, Frank Singh, Antje Lex and Steffen Schlör.
The final placings at a glance:
1st WG Cologne/Bonn
2nd WG Karlsruhe
4th TU Darmstadt
12. Hamburg + North