While the top match of the weekend in Mannheim between the Rhein-Neckar Löwen and HSG Wetzlar ended in a blow-out, the other encounter every handball fan was waiting for took place in Magdeburg, where the SCM hosted red-hot MT Melsungen. The guests were coming of two consecutive wins by at least eleven goals and looked strong early on taking a 4:2 lead. But Magdeburg fought back, equalized the game and then led by two (8:6) midway through the first half.
While the hosts were pushed by some saves of Dario Quenstedt between the pipes, Michael Damgaard took control on offense, scoring himself while also setting up his teammates. MT’s head coach Michael Roth was forced to take a timeout and also decided to give Momir Rnic a chance to show that he can contribute on the same high level as the weeks before, when the scored 14 times in two matches. The Serbian didn’t disappoint and finished the game with four goals.
The teams continued to battle each other the remainder of the first half and it was no surprise that the result was almost as close as possible, as Melsungen took a 15:14 lead into the locker room. Magdeburg, after a superb season last year which almost ended up in the EHF Champions League, is still struggling a bit this campaign and so far hasn’t lived up to the expectations. This game proved to be no different from their point of view.
Early on the second half Melsungen, step by step, took control of the game and led by three goals (21:18) after two thirds of the match. But easy mistakes and bad shot selection, along with SCM’s well known fighting spirit, kept the score close throughout, and the game was tied at 25 with four minutes to go. Earlier this season Magdeburg was losing such games, like against the Rhein-Neckar Löwen or at newly-promoted Leipzig, but not this time.
Although Melsungen led by two goals with less than a minute remaining, Magdeburg found a way to steal a point. Michael Damgaard scored with 35 seconds to go and although Michael Roth had taken a timeout for some final instructions, it didn’t help. Nenad Vuckovic was penalized for an offensive foul and then stepped into the goal area while trying to defend a shot from Matthias Musche. While time had already expired, Robert Weber (8/3) converted the ensuing penalty shot against Rene Villadsen for a final score of 28:28. While Weber led his side in scoring, Johannes Sellin (6/1) and Michael Allendorf (6/4) shared the honor for Melsungen.