Infobar:  Pilsen Challenge 2018: 9th - 11th February

25th Anniversary Brought Success On All Sides

25th Anniversary Brought Success On All Sides 2015 was a great year through and through for HBC Plzeň as they managed to reach some great success even internationally to improve club’s history while celebrating 25 years of existence.

09.02.2016 | Marek Kratochvíl

First Team Returns To Top Spots

It’s the first team in every club that is the most watched one of all. For Pilsen, it was one of best years so far and after some struggles in past seasons, they settled amongst the very elite teams in Czech Extraliga. Last year, the young squad managed to advance to Semi finals, where its journey was stopped by a soon-to-be runner-up Vlašim. However, the next semi finalist – Pardubice that finished one place above Pilsen after regular season, took the bronze medals.

In the summer, the team took some more slight changes. A local Michal Průcha returned to his hometown club after a spell in Vlašim. To stand a surprise for many, the Marlins dominated first part of the season in Czech top tier league. They lost only once and will enter the second half of the season from leading position.

“I’m really glad that we finally managed to finish the year like a team from the very top of what Czech ball hockey has, more that it was a year of our 25th anniversary. I’m also pleased with the current structure of our young first team as well as the junior categories. It looks it might be a long-term deal,” club’s president Josef Kadaně believes.

Pilseners On Road In Canada

The players made the anniversary year even more special with the summer trip to Toronto in Canada where they played three games – twice against the Withrow Knights Toronto, once against team Oshawa. It was for the very first time that any Czech team travelled all the way to Canada and played any games there.

“It was a really great gift for us on this special anniversary. We enjoyed Toronto as well as the beautiful nature around. The games were also a new experience for us, especially the one against team Oshawa had a decent quality,” first team captain Michal Edl remembers.

Edl was also pleased with the length of the rinks in Canada, which might be a solution also for some problems in the Czech Republic. “The rinks there were approximately 4 meters longer, which I think would be something our ball hockey needs. It could lead to greater attractiveness of the sport, which is something widely discussed these days,” shares Edl his thoughts.

HBC Plzeň squad with the Niagara Falls in behind.

Canadian Team Premiere In Czech Republic

The 2015 weren’t only a year when first Czech team travelled to Canada, but the opposite as well. Team West Coast Express attended the traditional Pilsen Challenge as the first Canadian team that played in the Czech Republic. They performed a typical physical style of game rarely to be seen in the Czech Republic.

A picture taken from Plzeň vs. West Coast (5-0). PHOTO: Jaromír Pech.

Youngsters Visited Zug For Games And Worlds

Thanks to the partnership with the Swiss side Oberwill Rebells, the U12s and U16s departed to Zug after end of last season, right when the World Championship took place there, to play a couple of games with local junior teams of same categories and the U18 Swiss National Team as well.

“It was a great experience for our boys to play two games, once according to our rules and then following the Swiss rules. We also went to see our national team’s game, which was a great opportunity especially for the youngest ones. We received nothing but positive reactions even from some of the parents,” said Edl about the trip.

The co-operation between Pilsen and Oberwill is still expanding. “Oberwill will arrive to Pilsen this winter for Pilsen Challenge, so our partnership should broaden. We are keen to carry on with this “international” trend of ours in next years for sure,” club’s chairman Josef Kadaně promised.

Momentka z utkání mladšího dorostu proti Oberwillu. Plzeň zvítězila 5:3. Autorem fotky je hráč A-týmu Michal Edl. #Zug#ballhockey#spiel#hbcplzen#marlins#juniors#OberwillRebels#Switzerland#hokejbal#win

Fotka zveřejněná uživatelem HBC Plzeň (@hbcplzen),

Last But Not least, New Ventilation In The Arena

Since 2008 where the Pilsen Ball Hockey Arena was built as the first one in the Czech Republic, in 2015 there was largest investment into it so far and it should very much increase the comfort it offers. “With co-operation with the City, the complete ventilation was renewed in changing rooms and places, where the players leave their gear. We hope it will help with the smell that was really unpleasant especially in the summer months,” vice-president Michal Edl explained.

HBC Plzeň would also like to thank to all its supporters and wish them lots of success and health in 2016.

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Pilsen Cup 2018 – Final Day Summary

This year´s Pilsen Cup is over! It saw West Coast Express´ triumph in under-17s while Spišská Belá took gold among under-15s with a win over hosts HBC Plzeň. Their older clubmates finished 3rd after Sunday playoffs.

Team GP S P
1. Plzeň 22 79:34 54
2. Pardubice 22 78:43 52
3. Kladno 22 69:45 44
4. Most 22 65:48 44
5. Kert Park Praha 22 83:57 42
6. Sudoměřice 22 48:62 27
7. Ústí n/L 22 53:70 27
8. Třinec 22 60:69 26
9. Letohrad 22 49:59 25
10. Kovo Praha 22 53:65 21
11. 22 38:77 20
12. Hradec Králové 22 45:91 14
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