Italhockey, encore at the World Cup with Japan

©Getty Images

Italy-Japan 4-3

Italy captured its second win of the rainbow tournament in overtime, 4-3, against a combative and tough Japan, which managed to give the Italian team a hard time throughout the match. Frigo decided after 5 seconds of the overtime against the Japanese lineup capable, in the second period, of coming back with two goals after Gazley and Kostner’s double lead. In the third period, the Asian formation also took the lead but Larkin signed the equalizer at 56°; With the two points won, Italy stands in second place behind leading Hungary, the only full-score team after the second day.

On May 1, the World Cup continues with three more matches worth the third day. Italy will face Slovenia at 7:30 p.m. while earlier Hungary – Romania (12:30 p.m.) and Japan – South Korea (4 p.m.).

Very fast start between Italy and Japan and uninterrupted match with continuous frontal reversals, without either team being able to però build important chances. Mantenuto creates Italy’s first real chance, but Japan holds the ice well and è very well arranged tactically. After 8’ great descent on counterattack by Tommaso De Luca, but his conclusion è just outside. The match heats up. Frigo ends up on the penalty bench for 2 minutes, but the Japanese powerplay has no effect. As soon as the numeric parity returns, Ivan De Luca misses a nice chance and Italy also earns the first superiority of the match, but despite a good circulation of the puck the result does not change. First half in the archives with untouched goals, with a very determined Japan and a willing Italy, but little incisive in attack.

The plot of the match does not change in the beginning of the middle period. Italy tries with Marchetti, while Japan responds with a tracciante by Yamada that makes the beard on the post. At the stroke of 24° the result is unlocked: the action built by Salinitri and Catenacci is finalized by Gazley, who signs his first goal in the Azzurri jersey. Narisawa then rises to the top, good on Trivellato first and then on Mantenuto. Japan doesn’t give up and hits a post on a deferred penalty with Shogo Nakajima. When there are 12 seconds left in the half, Italy doubles with a touch under goal by Diego Kostner after good work by Tommaso De Luca. Japan tries a reaction: Yamada engages Clara’s leg, while Yu Sato halves the disadvantage with a shot from short distance on Teruto Nakajima’s pass. The match remains very tight. Frigo did not affect the counterattack – excellent save by Narisawa – while Japan è more cynical and equalized at 34°, with a Kohei Sato shot from close range. The second half ended with a Japanese powerplay and two great chances built by Italy: on the first Gazley hit the crossbar with a torpedo from medium distance, on the second Marchetti did not find the winning deflection on the puck set for him by Catenacci.

After a long break between the second and third halves due to problems with a balustrade panel, Italy got off to a great start and came close to scoring a goal with Mantenuto while Narisawa stopped a shot at the crossbar by Catenacci. Italy continued to attack but Japan made the save. Italy’s good start comes to a halt. Japan tries to come out of its shell and starts to orchestrate some very sharp actions for a match that is always even. Italy has a powerplay but it has no effect despite a nice combination Catenacci – Frigo. At 52° Japan takes the lead for the first time in the match with a diagonal shot from the blue by Yonehama while Larkin equalizes with a powerful shot at the crossbar (56:19). With Japan on the attack, Italy earned a powerplay and Narisawa saved the score on a Gazley volley.

In the’overtime, played in a three-on-three, it takes only 5 seconds for Italy to score with Frigo ending a sprinting play with Mantenuto and allowing Italy to win 4 to 3.

You may also like...