Plucky Hypo earn one point against Dinamo-SinaraArticle
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GROUP A MATCH REVIEW: Francielle Gomes Da Rocha saved a point for Hypo, after scoring with 12 seconds to go to tie the game against Dinamo-Sinara

Plucky Hypo earn one point against Dinamo-Sinara

Dinamo-Sinara Volgograd looked likely to maintain its perfect record in Women’s EHF Champions League Group A on Saturday, but Hypo Niederösterreich tied the game in the dying seconds, to score its first point in this season.

HYPO Niederösterreich (AUT) vs Dinamo-Sinara 25:25 (15:14)

Having won in the first round by an eight-goal margin against HC Leipzig, Volgograd could have been considered a healthy favourite against Hypo Niederösterreich, as the Austrian champion was routed by RK Krim Mercator, 32:20.

However, the game was hardly a walk in the park for the Russian powerhouse, who barely scraped a draw, as the team’s young age average, 20.1, the second to last in the competition, was there to be seen.

Determined to forget the first loss, one of the worst in the team’s history, Hypo made a bright start and, led by three goals, 8:5, after 15 minutes.

Enter Francielle Gomes da Rocha, who was brilliant in the last 15 minutes of the first half. The versatile centre back, who is only 1.66m tall, managed to escape the Russian defence and scored three consecutive goals to maintain Hypo’s advantage right until the break.

But Dinamo-Sinara balanced the game and entered the second half with only an one-goal deficit, 15:14.

After the break, it was crystal clear that Dinamo’s coach, Viktor Ryabykh, instructed his players to take special care of Gorica Acimovic and Francielle Gomes da Rocha, Hypo’s most effective weapons.

The second half became a tight affair, whereas the first half was a classic shoot-out. Both defences came out on top, but it was Dinamo-Sinara who looked the likely victor, after Hypo entered in a 11-minute stint without scoring.

Therefore, it was no surprise that Dinamo hit back from 22:21 to take a three-goal lead, 22:25, with only 6 minutes to go. But the Russians’ young age average was decisive, as Acimovic and Gomes da Rocha made an unlikely comeback possible, the Brazilian scoring the last goal with 12 seconds remaining to tie the game and earn Hypo a point.

TEXT: Adrian Costeiu / br