Another day is in the books here at the 2016 Euro Championships! (In case you missed them: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3) As more teams worked to solidify placements in pool play, day four was full of one-sided victories, except for one game: Russia vs Poland.
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Photos by Oskar Polak, Sniper Pix
What initially started as a slow and uneventful meeting between Russia and Poland, turned out to be a fiery barn burner between two national teams where no love can be lost. Poland commanded the entirety of the game, at one point commanding a 7-3 lead. A fourth quarter push from the Russian transition and sharpshooting attack unit led to an eventual tie, before Poland’s Tom Carver was able to net the game winner with roughly three minutes remaining.
Notable mentions in this game would be the goaltending on the Russian side, as well as the Polish cheering section, which CLEARLY got into the heads of the Russian team.
Hard physical play at the faceoff “x” between Jakub Lipczic of Poland and Russia’s Jonathan Melvin led to long skirmishes for control between the lines, often resulting in multiple jerseys from both teams hitting the turf before possession could be won. This wasn’t the prettiest game by a long shot, but it was a brilliant display of Russian perseverance and Polish determination. With a final score of 8 – 7, No. 19, Thomas Carver had three goals on the day including the game winner in the final two minutes of regulation.
Overheard at the 2016 Euro Championships:
Let’s give the people what they want…goals, goals, and more goals!”
In this segment we’d like to take the time to recap all of the game scores as well as give some individual players some attention for their valiant efforts in the rectangle this past Sunday.
In the match-up between France vs Finland, the Finish came out on top by a large margin winning 18-3. Roope Jokela lead the day for the boy’s form Finland netting four goals and also dishing out three assists to his fellow countrymen.
Slovenia vs Spain faced-off in the morning hours on day four and the Spanish continued to play at a strong pace. Winning 14-2, No. 7 Daniel Christopher was not only the leading goal scorer but also lead in points going six (goals) and three (apples) on the day.
Netherlands vs Slovakia: Going up against a very young and inexperienced team, it was predicted that the Dutch squad would win their game against Slovakia with ease and they did just that.
With a combine goal tally 26 (tying the previous record combine score of 26 goals in a the ELC) the Dutch won handedly nineteen to seven as No. 1 Taylor Koncen deposited five goals and also picked 2 apples for his teammates to enjoy finish with seven points himself.
As you can maybe tell by now, there’s a strong pattern here at the Euro Championships when it comes game results on Sunday.
Norway vs Austria ended their match with a goal differentiation of nine goals (14 – 5) in favor of the Norwegian squad. The leading goal scorer in this game, however was not a member of the winning squad. Klaus Hauer, No. 12 for Austria, netted four goals (assists we not documented for this game).
Denmark vs Wales was yet another blow out as the Welsh scored twenty-one goals, only allowing their Danish counterparts to put in three on the day. Paul Simon of Wales finished the game as the leading scorer with four goals, also dishing out an assist.
Belgium vs Israel fit the mold for a one-sided match as the Israeli team won seventeen to four, but after taking a look at the box score, showed an interesting statistic. Matthew Cherry lead the way with three goals, and the rest of the squad did a phenomenal job sharing the rock. Eleven players scored for Israel with is the most evenly spread out scoring display thus far by a team.
Czech Republic vs Hungary finish with a final score 11 – 5. And Ondrej Sochna, No. 5 for the Czech’s, netted four goals and assisted one goal.
Something to be noted: Hungary has taken drastic steps in the right direction throughout this tournament. A slow start in the first quarter put the Hungarian squad down 5 – 1. The Czechs went 3-3 man-up in the first. Anytime you give the Czechs those advantages you better believe they are going to capitalize. Fast ball movement and unselfish play is the recipe for “team goals.”
As a team in their first international play, you can expect the mistakes to be made by the Hungarians, and that’s quite alright. These fellas fought tooth and nail until the end of the game. The draws alone were neutralized by the Rohanczy, Hungarian specialist nearly winning every clamp with ease, but with struggling wing play and lack of experience out there, the Czech’s aggressive play caused turnovers in “between the lines” and stole a few possessions back from the host nation squad.
Sweden vs Switzerland: This game turned out to be one of the bigger upsets of the tournament. Heading into the European Lacrosse Championships, the Swiss were not pegged to finish in the top 10, but as the old saying goes, “It’s not about who’s better on paper, the only thing that matters is what team plays the best on that given day.” And the Swiss approached every game as if it were a 1-game season, clear/focused minds, and should finish pool play 8th in Europe. Great job fellas! No. 22 Felix Stutz netted 5 goals to secure the win for his nation in front of an impressive crowd.
Fan Favorite: Just like the diehards from Spain, Swiss fans travel light but pack a loud punch! And not for nothing – their energy is contagious. As a spectator, one cannot help but jump on the bandwagon and root for Switzerland!
As the Womens’ Euro Championships are just around the corner out here, some of the players arrived early to cheer on their male counterparts and the vibes were at an all-time high in the stands. The nation stood as one, fans and players cheering and jumping in glee in a circle on the field after the final whistle blew. Certainly was a sight to see!
Wrapping up the Euro Championships for the day, Italy vs Latvia battled it out as the sun began to set. The Latvian squad came out on top as predicted winning by a score of eighteen to three as No. 47, Atrus Krastins deposited four goals in the Latvian victory.
Day 4 Results
Day 4 Photos
Photos by Oskar Polak, Sniper Pix