Valcea's pacing aheadArticle
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Romanians beat Zvezda in top match, Györ and Wolgograd take their first victories. Read the Sunday's summary of women's CL.

Valcea's pacing ahead

Go east: All three Sunday’s matches in women’s CL were won by teams from Eastern Europe. As Györ and Wolgograd took their first points in this season, Valcea remained spotless after beating Zvezda in the top game of this matchday. In any of the four groups each one team is spotless and leads the table: Viborg, Krim, Valcea and Larvik.

Group C:

Györi Audi ETO – SD Itxako 29:28 (14:13)

The match was highly tensioned and was decided with the final whistle: It was very hard work for Györ to win their first CL match in this season – even as hard fighting Itxako received two red cards against Pinedo and Fernandez. The game was completely equal in the first halftime, mostly Györ was in lead, led by Aurelia Bradeanu, who celebrated her comeback after the birth of her a baby. The first twelve minutes of halftime 2 were the best for Györ – and the match looked quite pre decided, as the Hungarians were in lead 21:16. But it took only four minutes for Itxako to score four consecutive goals (21:20) and to turn the page completely. As the Spaniards fought with tough weapons in the defence, Györ’s Orszolya Verten had to leave the field wit a head injury – and her team was shocked, as the Spaniards went away to 27:25 in minute 57. But Kovascics, the topscorer for Györ with seven goals, took the responsibility for her team and became the match winner by two late goals for the final result of 29:28. Topscorer for Itxako was Alberto with eight goals.

Oltchim Valcea – Zvezda Zvenigorod 31:27 (18:16)

Valcea continued their series with the second victory, and kept playing the role of one of the big favourites in this CL season. As the Romanians remained spotless, Zvezda lost the first match after beating Györ on matchday 1. Zvezda currently is number two in this group, sharing the same number of points (2) as Györ. For the Romanians it was the next good news in this week, after announcing a new sponsor deal with the “Orange” company.

For Oltchim Ramona Maier scored seven goals, Cristina Neagu and Julia Puscasu each scored five times, best scorer for Zvezda was Elena Polenova with seven goals. But one incident beclouded the happiness of Valcea, as wing player Ardean-Elisei had to leave the field with an ankle injury in the first halftime. Despite this injury the Romanians dominated the first halftime thanks to the Maier goals and were in lead all the time. As the distance decreased to 10:9, Oltchim coach Radu Voina took his time out. After the break, Oltchim goalkeeper Ungureanu showed some spectacular saves that helped to decide the match, attended by a great audience, very early. Zvezda coach Jewgeny Trefilow was impressed by Valcea: “The management of Valcea did a very good job in forming this team. No one can stop Valcea, when they play with their full ambition. Valcea is clear favourite in this group.”  Voina was highly satisfied: "This was a very hard game for us, and the defence was the key of success today. My team played excellent in defence. Of course, we missed several chances, but that’s part of the game."

Group D:

Dinamo Wolgograd – Buducnost T-Mobile Podgorica 31:18 (16:9)

Wolgograd again showed their strength – and this time the Russian champion took the points after the close defeat at FCK. Podgorica didn’t have a glimpse of a chance in this one sided match. The game was equal only in the very beginning. As Wolgograd paced up, Buducnost couldn’t come closer anymore after the 10:7 in minute 20. In ten minutes until the break the host pre decided the match, at halftime the gap was seven goals. This distance lasted until minute 47, before Wolgograd was in lead with ten goals for the first time (24:14). The biggest difference was 14 goals, in the end it was a sovereign 31:18 – and the first points for Wolgograd in the Champions League group phase since 2007. Buducnost remain without a point after matchday 2, as Dinamo is new number two behind Larvik.

TEXT: Björn Pazen