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January 14, 2005

Germany shocks Hungary in final of Deaflympics water polo

From: Australian Water Polo Inc., Australia - Jan 14, 2005

Melbourne (January 14).-- Germany upset Hungary 8-4 in the gold-medal final of the Deaflympics water polo competition at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatics Centre here today.

Full details of the tournament:

Day 1: 8 Jan 2005
Game 1: GER 7 (R Scheurer 4, M Grund 2, T Scheurer 1) ITA 3 (D Giacubbo 1, E Marsili 1, L Di Clemente 1) Game Notes: In a tight game, the strong German team overpowered the reigning 2001 Rome Deaflympics Gold medallists, Italy, securing a win with a solid performance in the 4th period. Roberto Scheurer (GER) was the standout player with 4 goals. Game 2: HUN 15 (R Pavlovics 3, M Tuske 2, Z Plaszko 2, Z Felfoldi 1, I Fabian 2, N Nemes 4, L Pinter 1) USA 6 (C Stehle 1, G Marecek 1, T Young 3, C Prewitt 1) Game Notes: The undermanned American team was overwhelmed early in their first round match against the hotly favoured Hungarians. A 4-5 comeback in the 2nd half gave the Americans hope but the Hungarian team powered away to a 15-6 win. Norbet Nemes (4 goals) and Robert Pavlovics (3) provided plenty of firepower for the Hungarians as they rattled in the goals.

Day 2: 9 Jan 2005
Game 3: USA 16 (T Young 6, G Merecek 3, C Stehle 3, C Prewitt 3, M Deichsel 1) AUS 2 (N Cleland 2) Game Notes: The Australian Crocs highly anticipated Games debut may have resulted in a loss to the stronger American team, but the Aussies fought the game out to the end. Inspired by the large number of supporters for both teams, the more experienced Americans powered ahead, capitalizing on fast breaks and aggressive offence. Stand out player was for USA Thomsen Young who powered in 6 goals.
Game 4: HUN 8 (R Pavlovics 2, M Tuske 2, Z Plaszko 2, N Nemes 2) ITA 6 (E Marsili 3, D Giacubbo 1, P Semeraro 1, L Di Clemente 1) Game Notes: The match which brought the hot gold medal favourites, Hungary, against the reigning Deaflympics champions, Italy, was always going to be fast paced, aggressive and volatile - and neither team disappointed. Hungary built a 6-2 lead after a strong first half but the Italians surged back late in the 4th quarter to set up an exciting last few minutes. Hungary however, held out for an 8-6 win.

At the end of Day 2, all teams have had a taste of competition having played at least 1 game each. Teams are delighted with the excellent facilities at MSAC and have applauded the introduction of the assistive light devices that mimic the referees whistle, hence drawing players attention to the referees signals. As the competition hots up, emotions are already overflowing, in and out of the pool, as players, coaches and supporters urge their teams to strive for possession and advantage in the pool. Competition favourites, Hungary, have made a strong showing, with 2 wins from 2 games and the upcoming clash with Germany on Monday is set to determine top position on the ladder and gold medal favouritism. Large and exuberant crowds have exceeded organisers expectations, filling the stands for every match to cheer on their teams. This promises capacity crowds for the medal play offs on Friday. Preliminary rounds run through to Wednesday, with semi-finals on Thursday before the deciding medal games on Friday -- Victoria Ryan

Day 3: 10Jan 2005
Game 5: HUN 11 (Z Plaszko 4, R Pavlovics 2, M Tuske 2, A Szilvasi 1, I Fabian 1, N Nemes 1) AUS 7 (R Scheuerer 4, T Scheuerer 2, M Grund 1) Game Notes: Germany jumped Hungary in the opening period to race to an 2-0 early break before Hungary settled into their game. The vocal crowd anticipated a shock result might be coming but the well-drilled Hungarians had other ideas. The match evened out at the half and Germany hung on through the 3rd period before Hungary nudged ahead 7-6 just 4 seconds before the _ hooter. The last period saw the strong Hungarian combination surge ahead as fatigue hit the Germans. With just 11 seconds left on the clock, the crowd was left hanging while the referees debated a technical call before Hungary finally triumphed 11-7. Standout players were Zsolt Plasko (HUN) and Roberto Scheuerer (GER) who each scored 4 goals.
Game 6: ITA 26 (E Marsili 13, L Di Clemente 5, P Semeraro 4, D Giacubbo 2, Rantonucci 2) AUS 0 Game Notes: The inexperienced Aussie Crocs were overwhelmed by the stronger and more experienced Italians in a 26-0 blowout. Aussie goalie Daryl Page did well under pressure and made some great saves particularly in the 4th period to avoid a total whitewash. Italian #4 Elios Marsili slammed in 13 goals, 5 in both the 1st and 3rd periods to leap to the top of the goal-scorers table.

Day 4: 11 Jan 2005
Game 7: HUN 17 (L Pinter 5, A Szilvasi 4, Z Felfoldi 3, T Vasko 2, I Fabian 2, P Kiss 1) AUS 3 (N Cleland 3) Game Notes: The Australia Crocs, appearing at their first Deaflympics Water Polo, put up a good fight against the more experienced Hungarians. After a huge loss to Italy yesterday, the Aussies were determined to get a few goals into the back of the net and restrict the Gold medal favourites to a score less than the Italians. This they did and a large Australian cheer squad urged their team on, inspiring Nathan Cleland to a 3 goal haul and the Aussies best performance in the competition so far. Hungary continued to score heavily while ensuring some of their starting players had plenty of bench time in readiness for the final series later in the week. Laszlo Pinter was the standout player netting 5 goals for his side as the undefeated Hungarians, with a rest day tomorrow, clinched top spot on the classification table.
Game 8: GER 17 (R Scheuerer 9, T Arndt 3, M Grund 2, T Scheuerer 2, C Rehmer 1) USA 13 (C Stehle 4, T Young 4, C Prewitt 2, G Marecek 1, S Jackson 1, M Diechsel 1) Game Notes: With an attacking game plan, the Americans stunned the strong German combination and ran out to a 3-0 early lead before going to the quarter break leading 5-3 thanks to Thomsen Young and Chris Prewitt who each rammed in 2 goals. Excellent outside shooting kept the USA in a commanding position, and once again the vocal crowd anticipated an upset result. But the Germans persistence paid off, seeing them go the half time break locked at 7 all. With no bench, USA tired and lost their way early in the 3rd period which the Germans dominated 5 goals to 2. The last period saw USA surge back with 3 unanswered goals, but Germany proved too strong, taking out the match 17-13.

Days 5 and 6 awaiting details

Day 7: 14 Jan 2005
Game 13 Bronze Medal Playoff: ITA 21 (L Di Clemente 7, E Marsili 5, P Semeraro 4, R Antonucci 2, D Giacubbo 1, R Cecilli 1, G Zampelli 1) USA 3 (C Stehle 2, S Jackson 1)
Game Notes: Italy Steamrolls USA for Bronze In a repeat of their Round 5 clash, Italy again proved too strong for the undermanned American team. In a close-checking opening, USA were first to score through Stehle and forced a number of turnovers to keep the Italians scoreless until mid-way through the 1st period. Di Clemente stood out with some wonderful shots on goal to see the Italians nudge ahead 2-1 at the break. USA's defence fell apart in the 2nd and a 5-0 blowout had USA in trouble at the half as the free-scoring Italians Di Clemente and Marsili peppered the goal for a 6-1 lead. The 3rd and 4th periods saw Italy surge further ahead as the American combination fell away. Italy eventually ran out comfortable winners 21-3. Game highlights were the goal scoring efforts of Clemente and Marsili who finished with 7 and 5 respectively including a magnificent back-hand sling-shot from Marsili that rocketed into the back of the net. The Italians celebrated their win in typical emotional style while USA will go home proud of their fighting efforts against the odds.
Game 14 Gold Medal Playoff: GER 8 (R Scheuerer 2, C Rehmer 2, T Scheuerer 2, R Schulz 1, W Klose 1) HUN 4 (Z Plaszko 2, M Tuske 1, N Nemes 1)
Game Notes: Germans Stun Hungary to Take Gold: From Day 1, this always looked to be the gold medal game and the large vocal crowd wasn't disappointed. In a physical clash that had opponents frequently in each other's face, the game was always in the balance through the 1st three periods. Nemes (HUN) opened the scoring before Roberto Scheuerer and then brother Tobias replied for Germany to set up a 3-1 lead at the first break. The 2nd period saw a magnificent long bomb from Roberto Scheuerer from well outside 10m and the Germans sensed this would be their day. Goals to Hungarians Plaszko then Tuske had the score back at 3-4 before Klose rattled in another for a 5-3 German lead at the half. German goalkeeper Richter was having a great game and stopped many balls that seemed destined to find the net. Both teams missed several opportunities through the 3rd as each pressed for advantage at the net but a goal-less quarter saw the 5-3 scoreline unchanged. Another goal-less minutes had the crowd loudly urging both teams on before Tobias Scheuerer broke through to drive one into the net followed quickly by another from Schulz to set up a 7-4 lead to Germany. Hungary struck back through the dangerous Plaszko with 3:41 still left on the clock and the game see-sawed back and forth as all players through themselves at each other. Germany finally struck through Rehmer to seal the match and the gold medal for Germany 8-4. The exuberant Germans fittingly celebrated their first-ever gold medal at Deaflympics water polo and the celebrations will likely continue all the way back home. Hungary put up a great fight but in the end could not break through the close-checking German defence nor match the goal-shooting firepower of the Germans.

© 2005 Australian Water Polo Inc.