Mladost Ends MEVZA League Campaign with Defeat to Slovenian Calcit

Mladost’s journey in this year’s MEVZA league concluded with a 3-0 loss (19, 26, 14) to the favored Slovenian team, Calcit. Despite being underdogs, the Mladost volleyball team showcased commendable resilience against the Slovenian vice-champions. Their focus now shifts entirely to the Croatian league, where they anticipate a pivotal match against Centrometal in the upcoming derby on Saturday.

Having already been edged out of contention for the MEVZA League Final Four, Coach Ratko Peris had set expectations clear before the season’s last tournament – prioritizing the development of young talents. This approach led to three victories in nine MEVZA league matches and a particularly notable performance in their final game against Calcit. Here, the young team demonstrated their potential, particularly in the second set, despite ultimately falling short against a team that not only topped the MEVZA league standings but also entered as a strong contender for the championship.

Coach Peris reflected on the loss, highlighting the critical moments in the match where errors tipped the balance. “Volleyball is a game of crucial points beyond the 20-point mark, where precision is key. Unfortunately, our errors at these junctures allowed Calcit to capitalize,” he remarked. Despite the team’s efforts to challenge the Slovenian runner-up at the House of Volleyball, a series of mistakes and coordination lapses prevented them from maintaining pressure on their formidable opponents.

The second set saw Mladost nearly overcoming their rivals, securing three set-points opportunities. However, a missed chance from a counterattack by Ecker, sending the ball into the advertisements, exemplified the narrow margins that separated victory from defeat. In the third set, Calcit efficiently concluded the match, capitalizing on 13 points from Mladost’s errors.

“In our last outing, we struggled and failed to display our full capabilities. Looking ahead, it’s imperative we minimize our mistakes,” stated Lukas Smolej, echoing the sentiment for improvement. Gabrijel Cvanziger emerged as the top scorer for Mladost once again, contributing 10 points. As Mladost moves forward, their commitment to growth and development remains undeterred, with their sights set on upcoming challenges in the Croatian league.