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Anthony DeLuca (left) became the match winner. © studioKOSTNER | www.kostner.info

Val Gardena celebrates a fabulous derby victory after a mega comeback

The next matchday in the Alps Hockey League was on the program on Saturday – and it was tough! In the South Tyrolean derby between HC Gröden and the Wipptal Broncos, the Ladin team won after an incredible comeback. Unterland lost in the penalty shootout, Meran came away empty-handed in Cortina.

The starting position before the match between the two could have been more different Wipptal Broncos and the HC Val Gardena cannot be. While the blue-whites greet from the top without losing any points, the Ladins are not getting up to speed yet. But then everything turned out differently and HCG won a crazy game 4:3 after extra time.


The table situation was initially reflected on the ice. The guests from Vipiteno dominated at will and after just 5 minutes the wild horses already had 2 hits on the post (Adam Capannelli and Alessio Niccolai) and a goal. In the 4th minute, James Livingston made it 1-0. After 7 minutes, Capannelli increased the score to 2-0 after a great individual effort. The Furie could thank goalkeeper Pauli Hofer that the game wasn't already decided after 20 minutes, because the guests could easily have scored 3 more goals.


In the middle section, the almost 400 spectators saw a similar game play. The Broncos created chances every minute, while the HCG hardly had time to breathe. Consequently, the third goal for the Wild Horses was no surprise. Capannelli made it 30-3 in the 0th minute. The game seemed to be over because the hosts still couldn't show any reaction and the shooting statistics (the guests fired 36 times on goal in the first two thirds) spoke for themselves.

DeLuca decides alone

However, the last 20 minutes will remain in the memory of fans of the Red Fury for a long time. In the 47th minute, Anthony DeLuca was able to net the score to 1:3 after great preparatory work. Just 23 seconds later, it was DeLuca again who surprised Jakob Rabanser and reduced the score again. Although the Broncos continued to have good opportunities afterwards and should have increased the score to 4:2 several times, it was again DeLuca who scored the goal to make it 3:3 and turned the ice stadium in Wolkenstein into a madhouse. After regular time didn't bring a decision, overtime had to decide between victory and defeat. After just 28 seconds, the hosts were able to celebrate a fourth time and clinched the victory. When asked who scored the last goal of the match, there is of course only one answer: Anthony DeLuca! The 28-year-old attacker scored all 4 goals and completed one of the craziest comebacks in the history of the Alps Hockey League.

Cavs and Merano are defeated

They had to go to Kitzbühel Underland Cavaliers also defeated 4:3 after a penalty shootout. After the guests turned the interim deficit from 0:1 into a 2:1 lead, the North Tyroleans struck back and were able to take the lead again with 3:2 in the final third. After Elmeri Hällfors' goal to make it 3-3 in the 55th minute, the game had to be decided in a penalty shootout as extra time did not bring a decision. The Eagles from Kitzbühel had luck on their side in the penalty shutout and celebrated their second home win of the season thanks to Joonas Niemela's decisive goal.

The Unterland Cavaliers had to admit defeat in the penalty shootout.


In Cortina he had HC Meran few chances and had to admit defeat in the end with 1:5. After the visitors were able to close the gap at the back for 15 minutes, Filippo Pompanin scored the first goal of the game in the 16th minute. Shortly before the first half-time break, the host increased the score to 2-0. Nolan Ritchie was able to reduce the score to 30:1 in the majority (3th minute), but Cortina put the final point with goals to make it 4:1 and 5:1.


AlpsHL, Saturday's games:

Celje – Lustenau 4:3
1:0 Grahut (01.00), 1:1 Moosbrugger (04.45), 2:1 Mintaustisks (18.55), 3:1 Sotlar (30.24), 4:1 Sotlar (39.06), 4:2 Johansson (49.22), 4: 3 Wennlund (50.14)
Audience: 160

Kitzbühel – Unterland 4:3 nP
1:0 Urbanek (07.24), 1:1 Kaufmann (07.53), 1:2 Remolato (28.21), 2:2 Niemela (41.48), 3:2 Maxa (48.35), 3:3 Hallfors (54.08)
Decisive penalty: Niemela

Audience: 621

Klagenfurt – Zell am See 1:9

0:1 Ban (04.03), 0:2 Egger (09.47), 0:3 Cuma (10.51), 0:4 Paulweber (27.12), 0:5 Jennes (35.29), 0:6 Wildhalm (46.00), 0: 7 Algic (50.25), 0:8 Jennes (52.19), 0:9 Wilenius (52.19), 1:9 Piuk (59.47)
Audience: 261

Salzburg – Linz 2:1 aet
0:1 Saha (16.57), 1:1 Assavolyuk (54.28), 2:1 Helander (64.23)
Audience: 104

Val Gardena – Wipptal 4:3 aet

0:1 Livingston (03.34), 0:2 Capannelli (06.38), 0:3 Capannelli (33.47), 1:3 DeLuca (46.03), 2:3 DeLuca (46.26), 3:3 DeLuca (53.47), 4: 3 DeLuca (60.28)
Audience: 386

Cortina – Merano 5:1

1:0 Pompanin (15.49), 2:0 Alvera (19.49), 3:0 Toffoli (30.14); 3:1 Ritchie (33.34), 4:1 Panciera (36.05), 5:1 Lacedelli (44.16)
Audience: 435


SPGUVTVP
1. Zell am See550028:714
2. Wipptal Broncos540118:1113
3. Jesenice540125:1212
4. Underland Cavaliers530224:1511
5. Bregenzerwald540118:1211
6. Rittner Buam530216:1110
7. Kitzbuhel530222:149
8. SG Cortina530218:169
9. HC Fassa520315:186
10. Lustenau520317:185
11. HC Meran520314:245
12. Linz II510412:174
13. HC Gherdëina510412:263
14. HK Celje51047:213
15. Klagenfurt II510410:273
16. Salzburg II51048:152



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