Aussies Daniel Dillon and Ater Majok faced off in Poland, while Motum’s BC Zalgiris Kaunas encountered a hiccup in their march to the playoffs in Lithuania.
Daniel Dillon and PGE Turow came up against Ater Majok’s Trefl Sopot in a high-scoring thriller in Poland. PGE Turow came away with the hard-fought 92-90 win, almost blowing a 16-point lead midway through the third quarter as Trefl Sopot pulled off a 21-35 quarter to close out the game. Dillon lead from the front, scoring 20 points (5/10 FG) with 5 rebounds, 4 assists, making 9/10 at the line with just 1 turnover. Majok’s impact for Trefl Sopot was significantly smaller, scoring 7 points and 3 rebounds in 24 minutes. Trefl Sopot lost despite shooting 50% from deep and out-rebounding Turow 37-26. Turow won the game at the line, finishing 23/26 at the line and making the most of their opportunities. The win moved Turow to an even 16-16 record.
In the final game of the season, BC Zalgiris Kaunas recorded just their 4th loss of the season, going down 79-82 to Siauliai. The game was a tight battle from start to finish, and even a fast-finishing Zalgiris couldn’t match Siauliai down the stretch. Brock Motum played 25 minutes for the league-leaders and scored 12 points (5/7 FG) alongside 6 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 three-pointers. It was a well-rounded performance, one that is sure to please the coaching staff. Unfortunately for Zalgiris, they committed 20 turnovers and just gave the visitors too many opportunities to score. While it is not the best preparation, Zalgiris will still be confident heading into their quarter-final with Pieno Zvaigzdes.
Cameron Gliddon exploded for 5 three-pointers in AZS Koszalin’s 75-89 loss to Energa Czarni. Energa Czarni controlled the game from the outset until the third quarter when Koszalin produced a 32-13 term from nowhere to get back in the game, though they couldn’t close out the game in the same fashion. Gliddon finished with 15 points (5/9 3PT) and 1 rebound in 33 minutes. Gliddon was the only real outside threat for the hosts, and were it not for his outside shooting, it would have been a much tougher day for Koszalin.
Ben Madgen continued his heavy scoring in Belgium’s Scooore League, piling on 20 points for VOO Verviers-Pepinster in their 98-94 loss to Liege in the bottom half playoffs. Madgen went 8/16 from the field and also contributed 3 rebounds, 3 assists and 4 turnovers in a fierce contest. The Wolves committed 23 turnovers while their opponents had 17 in what was a fast-paced and explosive contest. With 20 assists for both sides, the game was full of exciting and fast plays, yet at the same time was often an example of poor defense and offensive execution. Liege lived at the line and that is where the game was won as they hit 30/35, getting to the line at will and making Verviers-Pepinster pay. Next up for Verviers-Pepinster is Kangoeroes at home.
ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne dominated 6th ranked Pau Lacq-Orthez on their home court, 58-87 in the French Pro A. ASVEL started well, but it wasn’t until after half-time that they stamped their authority on the contest and stretched the lead to 16 heading into the final quarter. David Andersen played 21 minutes for the victors and scored 9 points (4/8 FG) with 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 turnovers as minutes were spread among the bench players in the second half. The passing of ASVEL was first class and really appeared the difference between the two sides, while their defense held the hosts to just 3/21 from behind the arc. The win certainly was significant for ASVEL, walking into Pau Lacq-Orthez’s home court and dominating certainly is a good sign. The win will be equally as valuable as they now move equal with Pau Lacq-Orthez with 19 wins.
Brad Newley came off the bench for a quiet, yet effective, 14 minutes in Herbalife Gran Canaria’s 98-85 victory over Andorra in the Spanish ACB. Newley was 3/5 from the field for 6 points, 4 rebounds, and 1 assist as Gran Canaria threw the ball around to finish with an astonishing 30 assists. Though Gran Canaria had limited success at the line (13/24), they were hot from deep, shooting 11/21 from three-point range and distancing themselves from Andorra. The most impressive aspect of the Gran Canaria’s performance was just 7 turnovers while recording 30 assists, compared to Andorra’s 14 turnovers and 14 assists. It was Gran Canaria’s 19th win of the season and was hardly a surprise given Andorra sit 11th on the league table.
Aleks Maric played 16 minutes off the bench for Rio Natura Monbus Obradoiro in their 88-69 victory over UCAM Murcia also in Spain. Maric added 7 points, 4 rebounds, and 1 assist as his side cruised to victory on the back of a dominant first quarter. It was a bit of an upset given that it is just the 8th win of the season for Obradoiro, with Maric having a positive impact since joining the team.
Over in the Italian Serie A, Chris Goulding played 23 minutes but did little of note for Auxililum Torino in their 73-54 loss to Obiettivo Lovoro. Goulding was limited to just 4 points (1/5 FG), 1 rebound and 2 turnovers in another quiet outing for Goulding which was made even worse given it came against the league’s last-placed side. He has yet to find his groove in his return to Europe and will be looking for a breakout game this coming week.
In the LEB Oro quarterfinals in Spain, Oviedo fell behind 0-2 in their best of 5 series against Penas Huesca after a 67-72 loss. Oviedo never really got into the game, trailing by 14 at half time and never able to get ahead from there. Dan Trist came off the bench and was only able to provide 5 points (1/5 FG) and 1 rebound in 11 minutes. They will be looking to bounce back in game 3 to extend their season.