MT Melsungen easily bested newly promoted 2nd Bundesliga side SG Leutershausen in the first round of the DHB Cup. After racing to a 17-11 half-time lead, the MT cantered to a final score of 35-20 and advances to the 'final' on Sunday at 4 pm against 2nd Bundesliga side TV 1893 Neuhausen, itself a 31-26 winner against HSG Rodgau Nieder-Roden. The top scorers in a highly fair match with just 106 spectator in the Hofbühlhalle in Neuhausen/Erms were MT right wing Johannes Sellin with 9 goals, 2 via penalty throws (archive photo Alibe Käsler) and Leutershausen's back left Valentin Spohn with 4 goals. <br/>
SG Leutershausen initially kept up well with the favourites, pushing the match to 8-6 in the 17th minute, but then the MT began finding its rhythm, including a goal from Fahlgren and three counterstrikes from Sellin (2) and Allendorf. The 13-7 deficit on 24 minutes was enough to force SG coach Marc Nagel to call for time. The breather didn't help the 'Red Devils', with the MT maintaining that same six goal lead heading into the half.<br/><br/>The MT came out of the intermission ready to roll, with Rnic Danner, Allendorf (penalty throw) and Sellin all hitting to push the lead to 21-11 on 38 minutes. With the game well in hand, MT coach Michael Roth used the opportunity to grant some playing time for his entire bench. Youngster Johannes Golla took advantage of the opportunity to put his name on the scorer's list.<br/><br/>Coach Michael Roth was pleased with his team's overall performance, even if the start was a little wobbly: "We needed around 15 minutes to find our groove, but thereafter we played well through to the end and didn't let up. Given the big lead at half-time, we had a good chance to switch people in and give everyone a chance to play. We played a really flexible game up front, and our defence stood well. Svetislav Verkic in goal deserves mention for a strong effort. We'll now watch a half of the match of our two potentially opponents for tomorrow, then head back to the hotel to discuss strategy for tomorrow".
Statistics: MT Melsungen - SG Leutershausen 35-20 (17-11)<br/><br/>MT: Verkic (1), Villadsen (1) - Sellin (9/2), Golla (1), Fahlgren (3), Danner (2), P. Müller, Boomhouwer (3), Rnic (4), Schneider (2), Allendorf (6/2), Vuckovic (2), M. Müller, Haenen (1).<br/><br/>SGL: Hübe, Mangold - Wetzel (2), Salger (2), Räpple (1/1), Kupijai, Pfattheicher (1), Lierz (3), Volk (3), Ruß (3), Spohn (4), Kubitschek (1), Conrad, Karpstein.<br/><br/>Seven metre throw: 7/5 – 2/1 (Sellin blocked by Mangold, 28th minute,; Allendorf blocked by Mangold, 53rd minute — Räpple blocked by Verkic, 3rd minute.)<br/><br/>Suspensions: 2 – 4 (2x P. Müller – 2x Wetzel, Kupijai, Kubitschek) <br/><br/>Referee: Ramesh Thiyagarajah / Suresh Thiyagarajah (Gummersbach)<br/><br/>Attendance 106, Hofbühlhalle in Neuhausen/Erms.