Krka Surprised ACH Volley Ljubljana

ACH Volley Ljubljana

In the return quarterfinal match of the Sportklub First Volleyball League, the team from Krka Novo mesto and ACH Volley Ljubljana faced off in the Marof Hall in Novo mesto. The spirited volleyball players from Novo mesto, led by Kosmina and Bregar, surprised the Ljubljana team and forced a third match next week in Ljubljana.

Novo mesto - Marof sports hall, 150 spectators, referees: Anton Pevc, Gregor Novak.

Krka : ACH Volley Ljubljana 3 : 1 (24, -26, 19, 22)

Krka: Jarvis 1, Medved, Erpič G. 4, Kocjančič, Kosmina 26, Bregar 23, Verdinek (L), Kožar 3, Pulko, Erpič U., Lindič 7, Laknar, Rojnik 1, Mejal, Jakše (L). Coach: Jernej Rojc

ACH Volley Ljubljana: Marković, Kržič 2, Šket 10, Najdič 2, Marovt 4, Šen 12, Koncilja 2, Gjorgiev 16, Sešek, Videčnik 10, Song (L). Coach: Radovan Gačič

The match began evenly, with neither team managing to gain a significant advantage in the first half of the set, but a large number of service errors were seen in the Marof Hall at the start of the match. After two unforced errors by Krka's players, the home team's coach Rojc called for the first timeout of the match (13:15). The players from Novo mesto improved their play and took a slight lead (18:17), maintaining the advantage towards the end after an ace by Lindič (23:22). In the extended play of the first set, Lindič again, this time with a block, gave the home team a 1:0 lead in sets (26:24). At the beginning of the second set, Krka's players did not relent, keeping up with the Ljubljana players until the 12th point. Šket's ace put the guests ahead by two points (12:14), followed by a timeout requested by coach Rojc, which paid off as Krka's players, after two exceptional blocks by Bregar, took a 15:14 lead. Even after a 30-second timeout requested by Gačič, Krka dictated the pace of the game (19:17), entering the finale with a minimal lead (21:20). In a heart-stopping finale, the ACH Volley players were more focused this time and won with a score of 28:26. The closely lost second set did not confuse Krka's players, who continued to play well on the wings of their fans. With Rojnik serving, the team from Dolenjska achieved a partial score of 5:0, which meant a substantial lead before the second half of the set (17:12). With strong serves, Krka's players caused a lot of problems for the Slovenian champions, reflected in the score and a reliable victory for the players from Novo mesto in the third set (25:19). The fourth set also saw an excellent start by the players from Novo mesto, who shone with excellent serves and penetrating attacks. However, the Dragons' game just did not flow, and the scoreboard in the Marof Hall already showed a 14:10 lead in favor of the home team. A timeout requested by Gačič and a change in the receiving position followed. Marovt brought the necessary freshness to the game, and Koncilja, with excellent serves, brought the score to a tie at 15 points. Just when it seemed like the Ljubljana team had found their rhythm and their moment was coming, Bregar and Kožar had different plans on the other side. They led the team to a convincing victory in the fourth set and to the third, decisive game, which will take place next week in Ljubljana's Tivoli Hall.

Statement from ACH Volley Ljubljana's coach, Radovan Gačič: "Today, we were not at the level we wanted to be and needed to be. Krka had nothing to lose; they entered the game relaxed, while we could not find our rhythm and gameplay that would have taken us to the semifinals today. Now we need to gather our thoughts and prepare well for the third game, which awaits us next week on our home court."