Austrian superstar Stanzl puts Oranje-Rood into KO16 ahead of Arminen

©: Frank Uijlenbroek / World Sport Pics

Pool A: HC Oranje-Rood 2 (B Stanzl 2) SV Arminen 1 (A Bele)
Two goals from Austrian superstar Benjamin Stanzl against his countrymen saw HC Oranje-Rood beat SV Arminen to secure top spot in Pool A and advance to the KO16 which they will host.

“It was not our best game,” Stanzl said after the game. “We created a lot of chances but it was still tight. They had a good chance at the end and it was never easy but I think we showed some good hockey.”

His goals both came as the last part of a team move, providing a simple touch but they are always enjoyable to score.

“Lucky me that I scored the two goals but they are some of the easier ones; EHL is always a highlight for us, even if it is the first round. These are international games and the big aim was the KO16 in Eindhoven.”

It also meant some bragging rights over one of his rivals who used to always get the better of his club in the Austrian league.

“When I was with Post, I didn’t play a lot against them at senior but we always lost. They were the big rivals and they did a good job for Austrian hockey.”

Stanzl volleyed home from close range in the first quarter for the opening goal following an excellent Thomas Briels run down the right baseline, flipping the ball over goalkeeper Michael Mantler.

But Arminen were not to be beaten easily and they duly fought back and got on the scoreboard via Alexander Bele when he finished off from the right of the circle.

Stanzl did restore the advantage before half-time with another tap-in for a 2-1 lead. They had many chances in the third and fourth quarter to extend the lead with Mantler’s goal peppered with shots but they could not move out of sight, meaning Arminen still had hope.

They needed a win, however, and when Pirmin Blaak kept out a penalty corner in the last two minutes, that appeared to be the end of their challenge.