February 17, 2022
These were wild, wild mid-week clashes these days. Each of the three games was filled with tension and thrills as the players desired revenge on their opponents. We started with two games on Wednesday and finished the mid-week fights today in Kaunas.
Wednesday, 16 February.
VHC Šviesa Vilnius – Varsa-Stronglasas Alytus | 30:33 (13:16)
On Wednesday afternoon, the capital of Lithuania was in focus. In Vilnius, the visitors from Alytus won the game in a tightly contested match. For this team, the victory is particularly important to continue the fight for the playoffs. After the game, Zygimantas Micevicius, a player from Alytus, emphasized: “There are no big pluses; the biggest plus is the victory. The points are very important for us. But we still need to improve our defense.”
Varsa started the game well. In just a few minutes, they built up a three-goal lead (0:3). After that, the game stabilized and became a round-robin battle, but the away team gained a record 5 goal lead (4:9) towards the middle of the first period. However, the home team did not intend to let their opponents go so easily, and VHC Sviesa went into the break with a three-goal deficit.
The second half was very evenly contested and the hosts took a two-goal lead (28:26) with just under 10 minutes remaining. It seemed that VHC Sviesa would keep the lead of a few goals, but after a minute break, Varsa returned to the court with a different energy, took the initiative, and won the game – 30:33. After the match, Skirmantas Plėta, a player of the home team, was disappointed: “We lacked discipline, as we have all season… We made stupid mistakes, and the visitors deserved to win.”
VHC Šviesa Vilnius – Plėta 10, Rasakevičius 7, Drabavičius 5.
Varsa-Stronglasas Alytus – Adamkevičius 9, Buronko 8, Lastauskas 5.
HC Dragunas Klaipeda – ZRHK Tenax Dobele | 41:31 (19:17)
The Lithuanian port city club retaliated against their Latvian opponents. Until the completion of the first period, the game was evenly matched. Neither team was able to establish a significant lead. The biggest difference in the first half was only two goals, and the home team led after 30 minutes (19:17). This demonstrates that the teams arrived with a single goal in mind: triumph.
However, the home side began to pull away in the second period. The lead expanded to three goals, then five goals by the halfway point of the second period (32:27). Dragunas not only kept this secure five-goal advantage, but steadily increased it to seven, and by the final whistle, the scoreboard difference was ten goals (41:31). “We don’t show our true potential when we have to play in the middle of the week. We gave it our all, but the home team made better use of the 1v1 situations and the chances in general,” stated Oskars Arajs after the game.
Dragunas club captain A. Bucis commented after the game, “Knowing how important this game was, we might have desired to win more. The numerous warnings, disqualifications, and two-minute suspensions reflected the hard-fought nature of the game.”
HC Dragunas Klaipeda – Hlushak 10, Drakšas 9, Naghavialhosseini 7.
ZRHK Tenax Dobele – Pančenko 7, Politers 5, Arajs 5.
Thursday, 17 February.
Granitas-Karys Kaunas – HC Vilnius | 30:26 (12:17)
At the start of the game, Granitas put on a strong performance. Granitas exhibited rock-solid defense in the first seven minutes of the game, leading 4:0. The coach of HC Vilnius answered with a timeout. We don’t know what the HC Vilnius coach said to his players, but it worked immediately. HC Vilnius scored six consecutive goals after the minute break (4:6). The visiting side attempted to gradually increase their lead and concluded the first quarter with a solid five-goal advantage (12:17).
At the start of the second period, HC Vilnius resumed the work of the first period. Within a few minutes, the visitors’ lead had risen to a new high of six goals (13:19). It appeared that all they had to do was enjoy the game and play as you played until this moment, and the victory would be theirs. But it only appeared that way… Granitas pushed on after that, and with just over ten minutes remaining, the hosts were already ahead (24:23). They were ahead, and they didn’t give it up until the end of the game. The hosts got their revenge against HC Vilnius (30:26).
“In the first half, we were far too relaxed, we were exhausted after a tough week… However, we were able to complete practically everything in the second half, which is why we received this result,” said home side player Tomas Švelpa.
Granitas-Karys Kaunas – Jovaišas 10, Šarkauskas 6, Kairys 5.
HC Vilnius – Urbonas 7, Lapinskas 6, Drevinskas 5.