The anticipation was great for the final game. The joy was somewhat clouded by the absence of two field players. In addition, the two usual goalkeepers were not available. The coaching staff – Marco Sutter, Ivo Inauen and Ronja Manser – therefore had to improvise a bit and finally put a field player in goal with Lilo Sutter. However, this turned out to be a stroke of luck, as they showed an extraordinarily strong performance with a 30 percent defense rate. It was also noted with astonishment that the opponents were no longer the same team with which they had already dueled in championship operations. For the Regio Cup final, eight players from Winterthur were exchanged and the team was filled with players from a higher strength class.
The first few minutes were marked by technical shortcomings and unclean passing on both sides. After just under four minutes, the Innerrhoden women had to act outnumbered for two minutes. Thanks to two saves by Lilo Sutter, it was the Appenzell women who opened the scoring after six minutes. It shouldn’t be an offensive spectacle, however, as both defenses were too good. Nevertheless, Larissa Wettmer always managed to leave her opponent on the outside position. Added to this was a mature covering performance by the entire team. It is worth mentioning Claudia Neff, who filled the holes in the cover group with tireless effort and made her tall opponent on the circle despair a bit.
Contrary to the negative expectations, the score was still even after twenty minutes at 6:6. The Appenzell women slowly became aware that there might be something to gain here after all. The Zurich women tried to stop the momentum in the attacking game of the Inner Rhodes with an offensive cover variant. But changes at Appenzell bore fruit and they worked their way up to the break (11:9).
The start of the second half was sub-optimal for the Appenzell women. More and more lack of concentration crept in, resulting in ball losses. Since Winterthur found their bite again, the two-goal lead suddenly became a two-goal deficit.
Exciting final phase
With a second timeout, position-related changes were made again. Emina Sehic took the pivot position, while Claudia Neff positioned herself on the left in the backcourt. There she was supposed to narrow down the paths of the opposing top scorer and from then on, together with Zoe Rusch and Timea Baumann, stimulate the limping attacking game again. This was now a little more agile again, which opened up gaps for the circle runner. There were also a few saves by the goalkeeper, including a seven-metre save. Supported by the loud support from the bench and the ranks, the Appenzell women managed to pull away by three goals (22:19) four minutes before the end. With their last timeout, the Zurich women tried again to turn things around and switched to an open woman marking. However, the Innerrhodians were not impressed and moved well without the ball. Alena Zürcher restored a two-goal lead with 56 seconds to go with her tenth personal goal. With a lot of fighting spirit and a strong team performance, the Appenzell women finally won the cup with a 23:22 victory.
For the TVA in use: Lilo Sutter; Larissa Wettmer (2), Claudia Neff (1), Timea Baumann (3), Zoe Rusch (5), Liana Kummer, Shanaya Treuter, Celine Rusch, Emina Sehic (2), Pania Bischofberger, Alena Zürcher (10).