First loss of the season for the Angels at the league leader

Rutronik Stars Keltern – Eigner Angels Nördlingen 71:51 (16:13, 15:16, 25:15, 15:7)

The duel between two previously undefeated teams inevitably thins out the top of the table in the 1st Toyota Women’s Basketball Bundesliga. True to the Highlander motto „There can be only one.“ the Eigner Angels went into the game at the reigning champions and cup winners Keltern quite confident. Even though they had never taken points home to the Ries in the past, the Imreh squad still had the self-confidence of three successful competitive games in a row in their luggage. But at the excellent team from Baden-Württemberg, the Eigner team was shown the limits for the first time this season. The 71:51 defeat hurt less than the injury to Mariam Haslé-Lagemann.

Once again, the Angels surprised their opponent by being wide awake and going full throttle from the start. Two attacks, 5:0 for the guests. But the Angels not only had to accept the lead change after four minutes, but also had to cope with the ankle injury of Mariam Haslé-Lagemann, who was out for the rest of the game. A 10-0 Keltern run took advantage of the Angels‘ shock phase and turned the match in favor of the home side. At least Hill and Co recovered a little until the quarter break. Thanks to high intensity, they were still well in the race at 16:13.

Obviously, Keltern presented itself as a different category than the previous opponents. Every halfway free throw of the Eigner team had to be worked hard for and cost a lot of energy. Would the loss of Haslé-Lagemann have an even greater impact on the Angels‘ already short rotation? As the game wore on, however, the Imreh squad seemed to adapt to the increased intensity and refused to be shaken off. The halftime score of 31:29 was partly due to the accuracy from the free throw line (8 of 8) and two threes by Anissa Pounds shortly before the break.

Right after the restart, Nördlingen’s Canadian Meg Wilson scored the 35:35 equalizer. The German champions were visibly impressed, switched to the next level of intensity in defense, generated a couple of Angels turnovers and regained control of the match. When Keltern then started hitting most of the free throws they were awarded, ten points quickly separated the Stars and the Angels.

Coach Imreh left no stone unturned and ordered zone defense, which actually worked. Keltern threw away a lot, but the rebound landed all too often in the hands of the hosts until they finally scored at some point and thus increasingly pulled away. The Angels were visibly running out of steam, while Keltern’s coach was able to change his multicultural squad, 10 players from 10 nations.

Hill and Co did not give up, but in the end had to acknowledge the deeper bench of the hosts and their individual quality. The points for the fight for play-off places must be taken in other halls, not at the league leaders. The next opportunity to do so will be next weekend in Osnabrück, then perhaps for the first time with US guard Asha Thomas, who has returned to training after overcoming a muscle injury.

For the Eigner Angels played:
Mona Berlitz (2), Amenze Obanor (4), Elina Koskimies (2), Samantha Hill (12), Maria Dzinic (2), Mariam Haslé-Lagemann, Meg Wilson (13), Anissa Pounds (12), Bianca Helmig (4).