Especially when I wrote my Best Ones 2022 posting recently, I absolutely felt that I should increase the coverage of sports events and especially floorball significantly for 2023. Even though my schedule is rather packed in early 2023 (majorly due to the Weird Al Yankovic Tour 2023 and Rock of Ages shows), I loved to have the opportunity to be back in a place where I used to be very often during my university days: right after their women’s team match, the Red Devils Wernigerode hosted the Berlin Rockets. While the capital city team had a good chance to reach the playoffs, the hosts from the Harz region struggled in the 2022-23 season so far, just looking back to one regular matchtime victory out of twelve matches. Definitely an interesting match-up on 7th January 2023.
Red Devils Wernigerode – Berlin Rockets – Match Report
Chances for an upset? The Rockets did not allow the home crowd to have too much hope for that from the very beginning. Berlin was controlling the game early. Two nice assists by experienced Christian Keil also turned the dominance into facts: just after some three minutes, he initiated a right wing attack, which Leon Schweiger closed with the first goal of the match. Some five minutes later, Keil’s second assist lead to the goal by Nick Hennig. Wernigerode tried to be a bit more active in this part of the match, but could not convert.
However, there was still quite some hope for the Devils. After both teams survived a short-handed situation during the later time of the first period, Georg-Martin Gahnz closed up for his team with 32 seconds left on the clock. It was a straight attack with some faith and fortune – good to see that the team was still believin’ in their chances. By the way, you just have to mention the two referees Tim Galezka and Steven Ehebrecht in this match report. They had a fantastic first period with a lot of great presence and communication. Even though the remaining match tended to feel slightly weaker, their performance at the Stadtfeldhalle has been a treat.
No Mercy by the Rockets in the Second Period
The second period felt to be a perfect illustration of the situation of the Men FBL team of the Red Devils. Berlin scored a series of four goals in a row until the 33rd minute, including a deflected shot and an own goal, when a harmless shot somehow hit the back of goalie Florian Stroinski.
Wernigerode felt to struggle with fighting against the loss first, but one of their strengths are the individual talent of some key players. In the 37th and 39th minute, Vojta Krupicka and Henry Taskinen closed up the score to a 3-6. However, instead of using this moment and maybe having a more optimistic forward-looking view in the intermission, they lost their concentration. Janne Maikkonen and Hannes Thun thrusted the sportive dagger right in the heart of the team and the fans, when they used the final minute of the period for two Berlin goals within twelve second. Sports can be really cruel sometimes.
The Devils close up… But they don’t make it
The fans used the intermission to discuss the future of Wernigerode coach Jukka Peltonen in the men’s loo and the DJ chose Don’t stop believin’ as the backing soundtrack for the first stops of the third periods. Both are definitely not the best signs in a sports match. Somehow, the people felt that the fat lady had already sung her famous song, Berlin made use of the confusion in the Devil’s defense after those have substituted one player during a running Berlin attack – David Lichtwer increased the lead to 9-3 from a Berlin perspective (51st). However, the Rockets gave Wernigerode the opportunity to dream again, when shortly thereafter, Leon Schweiger fouled on during a delayed penalty against him and had to make himself comfortable at the sin bin for two minor penalties. It just took Markus Takkula to make use of the first power-play and even though the Devils did not convert the second one, two goals in the 55th minutes closed up the score to 6-9
.Both goals again illustrated the individual skills of the team – and also that they should have been able to identify more weak spots in the Berlin defense. However, they just did not score that one goal, which made have turned back the Stadtfeldhalle to the madhouse which it used to be in earlier seasons. Instead, the Devils had to pull their goalie and caught two empty-netters in the 59th and 60th minute. It was a weird sidenote that Wernigerode scored two more goals in the last 35 seconds of the match – once the match was finally lost, they started to believe in their strengths again. The final score of 8-11 was thus even rather close.
Red Devils Wernigerode – Berlin Rockets – My View of the Match
What is the right message for Wernigerode after this match? The optimistic view would definitely not be wrong, stating that they could have beat Berlin quite surely. Especially the third period gave that hint. On the other hand: they didn’t. And it is no time to assume or speculate about potential options. Wernigerode needs wins, points. Berlin gave them eleven hints about open issues. Time is running – and while I loved to see the very experienced, effective style of the capital team, you can just keep your fingers crossed that there is no unhappy ending of the 2022-23 season for the Red Devils.
Red Devils Wernigerode – Berlin Rockets – Lineups
Red Devils Wernigerode: 11 Florian Stroinski, 1 Kay Ecklebe – 2 Tino Weiß, 4 Vojta Krupicka, 5 Antti Koistinen, 7 Marc Charlet, 8 Benedikt Stubbe, 16 Jannik Rex, 19 Justin-Leon Tropschug, 24 Georg-Martin Gahnz, 26 Leo Alexander Zeiske, 48 Markus Takkula, 66 Rasmus Olsson, 69 Marvin Selzer, 72 Jannes Zilling, 77 Florian Hellmund, 90 Steven Pascal Kastner, 91 Henry Taskinen
Berlin Rockets: 15 Jonas Bestgen, – 5 Hannes Thun, 8 Frederik Bonk, 11 Chris David Pajonzeck, 13 Christian Keil, 14 Nick Hennig, 15 Jonas Bestgen, 20 Leon Schweiger, 22 Jarni Savolainen, 25 Anton Weyrauch, 27 David Lichtwer, 42 Clemens Bandrock, 64 Eeli Süar, 68 Janne Makkonen, 76 Niclas Lösel, 92 Christian Moos, 97 Jakob Casper Scnaithmann
Red Devils Wernigerode – Berlin Rockets – Gallery
In the sports gallery, there is a designated major size picture gallery with 390 pictures of this match at
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