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22.04.2019 Kari Glödstaf

Catz 2018-2019: So near but still so far…

Catz Lappeenranta won the silver medal in the Women’s Basketball League of Finland. Usually we would say they lost the silver but this time we will use the word won. Why? Because there weren’t many fans or experts who would have believed that Catz could even play in the finals. Some said they could be 3rd or 4th but in the finals? No.

The regular season was very difficult. Team was gathered quite late and that was easy to see on in the autumn games. Attacking was difficult and in defence the team made easy mistakes. It was difficult to find any balance to the game because there were a lot of ups and downs. The team lost some of its players which made the game more difficult. Still, when they played their best they could win anyone and when the worst they could lose to everyone. When the regular season was finished Catz was in 5th place (W15, L12) and most experts were sure that Espoo Basket Team would drop them from the semi-finals.

What happened? Catz woke up and started to play as a team. Every player knew what they should do and did it the very best way. They started defending very actively and the offence was much more creative than before. Every player was ready to take responsibility when needed and surprisingly they won EBT 3-1 and went to the semi-finals against Hyvinkään Ponteva.

“Well, Catz beat EBT but HyPo is still too strong for them. They have many former national players and three very good American scorers. Catz can possibly win once but not thrice” people said. But Catz showed that teamwork is the best way to get results in games. HyPo seemed to be a little bit scornful in the first game and when they noticed that Catz is much harder opponent than they thought it was too late. Catz won straight in three games and what’s best, they got the last win from Hyvinkää.

The finals were very even. Only the first game which PeKa won by 15 points was bad from Catz. The second game they lost by four points after the extra time included a lot of bad luck. In the third game they played very disciplined and the whole team did a lot of work and maybe they got a little bit luck too but they could stretch the final series to the fourth game. Unfortunately Catz didn’t win that game even though they had a chance to score only two seconds before the end. The ball was missed and PeKa could start to celebrate their second victory in row. “Of course I am disappointed right now but overall this was an amazing season and I can be very proud of every player” coach Mika Haakana told after the fourth game.

Despite being the losing team in the finals Catz doesn’t need to be ashamed. They started from the difficult position and grew as a team which really wanted to do their best and they won the medal. It was silver this year but who knows if it will be gold in 2020? Catz is a team which every fan around the world can be proud of! Thank you for being with the team this season and let’s hope we’ll see as many of you with us next year!

Kari Glödstaf

Catz-toimisto, Savonkatu 3, 53100 Lappeenranta • toimisto(at)catz.fi
Kaakon Nettipalvelu Oy