Eagles stage stunning comeback but fall short of a win
A four goal half-time deficit was turned around in stunning fashion against Nottingham HC at the weekend however Eagles couldn’t hold out for the win
The clash of 6th and 7th in the Premier Handball League, with West London still in danger of relegation, was always going to be a fiery affair. Both teams started strongly, Eagles’ line player Tony Sharp making good use of the space left for him by Nottingham’s advanced 4-2 defence scoring two of West London’s opening six goals. However, the same could be said of Nottingham with Josh Plumridge scoring five of the opening ten for the home team.
With both sides evenly matched the first sign of a gap opened up on 21 minutes with a two-minute suspension for Mateusz Florczak; Nottingham opened up a three-goal lead in devastating fashion, extending to four by the half-time buzzer. The score, 15-11.
The half-time team talk from coach Marc Fayemi stirred something in the Eagles team as the opening to the second half was possibly the best they’ve played all season. Led by captain Lucas Carstens, who himself scored seven in the second half alone, Eagles turned a four goal deficit into a four goal lead at 22-18 with fifteen minutes remaining.
It was at this point Nottingham decided to make wholesale changes; bringing back on much of their starting line-up, switching out their goalkeeper in attack for an extra court player and man-marking Carstens out of the game. Yet, Eagles responded well, Todor Nikolov scoring three goals in a row against a fragmented defence.
Into the final minutes the tiredness began to form cracks in the Eagles gameplan; misplaced passes allowed Nottingham to pull level with 40 seconds remaining. Despite one final attack West London couldn’t convert. The final score was 28-28 with West London unable to take revenge for their final second defeat to Nottingham earlier in the season but congratulations all round on one of the games of the season for entertainment.
Eagles now move on to their final game of the season on Saturday 28th April at Leyton Score Centre against relegation rivals Liverpool HC. Nothing but a win will ensure West London’s safety for another year. As the final game of the year we’d also like to invite all players, friends and family to the game to see out the 17/18 season in style!