2018-19FinalsGame 2
April 12, 2019 CET: 20:00
Local time: 20:00 MERCEDES-BENZ ARENA

ALBA survives OT, forces decider

The 2018-19 7DAYS EuroCup season will go down to the final game! ALBA Berlin bounced back from its initial loss in the best-of-three series by forcing overtime and downing Valencia Basket 95-92 in Game 2 at Mercedes-Benz Arena on Friday. The series is now tied at 1-1 and Valencia will have home-court advantage in Game 3 at 20:30 CET on Monday, April 15. In a game in which neither team held a lead bigger than 7 points, Peyton Siva was one of ALBA’s heroes, making a layup with 2.2 seconds remaining in regulation to force overtime, 83-83. ALBA opened the extra time with back-to-back threes from Rokas Giedraitis and Luke Sikma, and never relinquished that lead. Giedraitis had 17 points to lead all ALBA’s scorers, while Sikma had 15 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists. Siva and Martin Hermannsson each had 14 points plus 6 assists, and Niels Giffey netted 11 points in victory. Sam Van Rossom kncoked down 6-of-8 triples for Valencia, scoring 22 points. Fernando San Emeterio scored 16, and Will Thomas had 15 points, 5 assists and 4 rebounds in defeat.

Mike Tobey had a three-point play and San Emeterio struck twice from downtown to give Valencia an early 6-9 lead. Will Thomas and Van Rossom each hit one from beyond the arc to keep Valencia in front, but a jump hook by Sikma and a three-pointer from Franz Wagner helped put ALBA in front. Another three from Wagner and a driving layup from Siva gave the hosts a 23-21 lead after 10 minutes. The teams continued trading blows, with Matt Thomas burying a three-pointer, while Sikma scored twice inside. A three from Joan Sastre put Valencia back ahead, 27-29, but Hermannsson’s 6 quick points restored ALBA’s advantage, before Giedraitis and Johannes Thiemann fueled a 7-0 run for a 40-33 ALBA margin. However, Dubljevic, San Emeterio and Will Thomas brought Valencia within 42-39 at halftime, and the same three players put together another 0-6 run that had Valencia with 47-48 lead in the third quarter. A three-pointer by Giedraitis and a layup-plus-foul from Giffey put ALBA in front again, 62-59 after 30 minutes. Sikma downed a jump hook early in the fourth quarter but Van Rossom did better with a bomb from downtown and a layup by Aaron Doornekamp tied it at 66-66 with 7 minutes left. Louis Labeyrie scored twice around the basket to cap a 0-9 Valencia run, but Giffey ignited the crowd with a huge dunk before a three-pointer by Van Rossom gave the guests a 66-71 edge with 3 minutes left. Joshiko Saibou and Siva tried to change things for the hosts and a layup by Sikma gave ALBA hope, before a three-point play by Thiemann tied the game at 76-76, with 1:34 to go. Thiemann put ALBA ahead with a layup, but Van Rossom buried a three-pointer with 27.4 seconds on the clock. Siva only split free throws for the hosts, and San Emeterio nailed both to make it 79-82. But ALBA kept believing, and after split foul shots from San Emeterio, Siva scored an uncontested layup with 2.2 seconds left to make it 83-83, forcing overtime. In the extra session, Giedraitis and Sikma each hit triples to open a 89-83 lead. Van Rossom answered with a downtown shot of his own, and had another one after an offensive rebound from Will Thomas to cut within 93-92 with 54 seconds remaining. Valencia had a chance to take the lead, but Matt Thomas missed a corner three and Sikma gave ALBA a 3-point cushion with a pair of free throws. The hosts prevailed by making one more defensive stand as Matt Thomas’ last-second step-back triple hit the front rim.

Historic scoring

With 187 total points, this was the highest scoring EuroCup Finals game ever. No team in EuroCup Finals has scored more than ALBA’s 95 points, which surpassed the previous high of 92, by UNICS Kazan in 2011, and Valencia in 2010. Valencia matched those 92 points in this contest.

Game-changing moment

Rokas Giedratis opened overtime by missing a three-pointer, but that did not stop him from trying another on the ensuing possession. He made that one, and Luke Sikma followed by making a wide-open three of his own, giving ALBA an 89-83 lead to start overtime, which they did not relinquish.

Key stat

ALBA had 20 assists and 8 turnovers, while Valencia had 16 assists but was forced into 18 turnovers.

Hitting it from long range

Valencia hit 14 triples, one shy of its season high, and the second most in a EuroCup Finals game in the history of the competition. However, it was not enough to win Game 2.

Next game

Valencia will host the deciding Game 3 on Monday. This is the second time in three seasons since this format has been adopted that the EuroCup champion will be crowned in a series decider. The first time it happened, in 2017, Valencia lost Game 3 on its home floor against Unicaja Malaga.

Peyton Siva - ALBA Berlin - EuroCup Finals Game 2 - EC18
Friday, April 12, 2019
Eurocupbasketball.com
Referees: BELOSEVIC, ILIJA; KOROMILAS, ELIAS; VILIUS, GYTIS
Attendance: 14500 (Tentative)
By Quarter1234Extra 1
ALBA Berlin2319202112
Valencia Basket211820249
End of Quarter1234Extra 1
ALBA Berlin2342628395
Valencia Basket2139598392
ALBA Berlin
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
1 SAIBOU, JOSHIKO 2:09 2     2/2   1 1 1           1 5
3 SIVA, PEYTON 30:56 14 2/4 1/5 7/9 1 1 2 6 2 3     5 6 14
5 GIFFEY, NIELS 27:51 11 5/7 0/2 1/1 1 1 2 1 1       3 3 11
10 SCHNEIDER, TIM 11:34   0/3 0/1   3   3           1 1 -1
15 HERMANNSSON, MARTIN 30:32 14 4/7 0/3 6/7 2 2 4 6   2     3 4 16
22 WAGNER, FRANZ 11:17 6 0/1 2/4                   1   2
25 OGBE, KENNETH DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
31 GIEDRAITIS, ROKAS 32:15 17 1/2 4/8 3/4   2 2 1 1 1     3 3 14
32 THIEMANN, JOHANNES 15:24 7 3/3   1/1 1 1 2 1 1       5 4 10
33 CLIFFORD, DENNIS 13:16 5 2/3   1/2 2 2 4   1 1     1 3 9
35 NNOKO, LANDRY 15:03 4 1/4   2/2 2 1 3     1     5 1 -1
43 SIKMA, LUKE 34:43 15 4/8 1/4 4/4 1 5 6 4 1   1   3 3 20
Team           2 2 4               4
Totals 225:00 95 22/42 8/27 27/32 15 18 33 20 7 8 1 0 30 29 103
        52.4% 29.6% 84.4%
Head coach: GARCIA RENESES, AITO
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Valencia Basket
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
6 ABALDE, ALBERTO 7:07 4 2/3 0/1     2 2           1   3
7 LABEYRIE, LOUIS 17:12 5 2/4   1/2 1 4 5     1     1 3 8
8 DIOT, ANTOINE 9:17 2     2/2   1 1 1   1     2 1 2
9 VAN ROSSOM, SAM 36:48 22 1/2 6/8 2/2 1 2 3 3   4     3 3 21
10 THOMAS, WILL 34:10 15 4/5 2/3 1/2 3 1 4 5   1     3 1 18
13 TOBEY, MIKE 7:02 3 1/1   1/1           1     5 1 -2
14 DUBLJEVIC, BOJAN 31:36 9 1/4 0/2 7/8 3 1 4 1   2     3 9 12
17 MARTINEZ, RAFA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
19 SAN EMETERIO, FERNANDO 25:30 16   2/6 10/12   4 4 2   1     3 9 21
21 THOMAS, MATT 15:18 5 0/1 1/4 2/2   2 2 2   1     2 1 3
30 SASTRE, JOAN 28:15 6   2/3     3 3 1   4     3 2 4
42 DOORNEKAMP, AARON 12:45 5 1/3 1/3   1 2 3 1 2 2   1 4    
Team           1 3 4     1         3
Totals 225:00 92 12/23 14/30 26/31 10 25 35 16 2 19 0 1 30 30 93
        52.2% 46.7% 83.9%
Head coach: PONSARNAU, JAUME

Head Coaches

GARCIA RENESES, AITO
ALBA Berlin

“It was a very good game, we played with a lot of intensity and faith. [On defending the final possession] I usually don’t want to make fouls, it’s true it was possible to play with fouls when they don’t shoot, but this is easy to say and difficult to do. You must be used to making fouls every time and we’re not used to this. We’re used to defense and playing a normal game. Logically, winning by 3 and with 5 seconds left, it’s also possible to make the foul. But we don’t have this intention. With good defense it’s more difficult for them to score. We did much better today rebounding, but they had a lot of three-pointers today and all their players shoot from three, even the players who play 5 like Dubljevic or Will Thomas. When you lose the first game and win the second you are very happy, and now to come back to the position where you must compete in Game 3 is very difficult. I’m not worried about winning or not, just giving the best of us and competing. I dint want to add pressure to my players by thinking about winning or not – they must think about defending well, rebounding well, playing offense well. If we are able to win, even better, but that’s not my main problem.”

“Perhaps we played with better confidence in ourselves, with the difficulty that in front of us there was a team like Valencia scoring every time from long distance, but in the final plays we had faith in winning the game. [How will he approach Game 3?] I will think now! For the moment I’m happy because I wanted mainly to compete and we competed. If we lost I’d be happy because we competed. To play in front of this Mercedes Benz Arena, full of people enjoying the game, is very good for our team.”

PONSARNAU, JAUME
Valencia Basket
"First of all, congratulations to ALBA Berlin. They played a great game, but they also played well in Game 1. Their playing level in both games was good. I am satisfied because my team gave 100% effort. We made some mistakes. We had problems, especially with turnovers and sometime with rebounds. I think we improved during the game, controlled the boards and changed the situation. Turnovers, especially in some key moments, allowed ALBA to control the rhythm. Some of our players had foul problems tonight and we need to learn the philosophy and mentality of the referees to adapt better. We have one more game and know that we are ready. At the same time, we play against a team that had more confidence today. If we want to beat ALBA, we need to play better than in this game and Game 1. [On the game-tying shot missed by Matt Thomas] If I remember correctly, Luke Sikma switched and was on him, and forced him into a bad shot. Matt did not think about dribbling to take advantage, step back and shoot. He doubted and maybe didn't take the best decision, but it is clear that we wanted to get him open for a shot, and we didn't manage it. We cannot have regrets - they play good defense in all these special situations. We have to get more options, more passing lanes because they can collapse your offense, especially beyond the three-point line."

Players

GIFFEY, NIELS
ALBA Berlin
"This is why you get what you deserve when you play at home, and this is why the top teams have an advantage - the home-court advantage! We felt it today, they felt it in Valencia a little bit - you feel more comfortable when when you have your fans' back. It felt awesome - this is a big gym and you don't see it that full too many times. It was an awesome crowd, and good fun. I think pressure goes both ways this time. There is no time to really relax and overthink it, but they have bonus of playing Game 3 at home. I think it makes a little difference, but you never know when the pressure is on."
CLIFFORD, DENNIS
ALBA Berlin
"That was really cool! We talked about that before, just how anticipated the atmosphere was going to be, and it was really exciting. I think that really helped in a game like that, just the energy in the stadium, the positivity of all the people that had our backs, it really helped us. In Game 3, rebounding and making sure we control the paint will be the keys. I think we did a much better job at that because they play inside out. If we control the inside then they won't get as many threes in rotation, and then focus on playing an away game with the right mentality. You have to go into their house and steal the game."
SIKMA, LUKE
ALBA Berlin

"It was great, more than anything, to play in front of our fans and use their energy. Hopefully we can bring back the trophy. The intensity was way better - just guys stepping up and making plays at the right times. It was up and down for the last quarter and overtime, and neither team ever gave up. It was close at the end and we just made a couple more plays than they did. Tight, competitive games like this go down to a couple of plays. We earned an opportunity to compete and fight for the trophy in that third game in Valencia. We just have to go there and enjoy it, and try to bring the trophy home."

“We just believed. It was huge to be back in front of our home crowd and have everyone behind us. If we were going out, we wanted to go out on our terms. The guys kept battling all night, somebody always stepped up and I’m proud of my guys. We’ll just enjoy this tonight and try to bring one home on the road. We had no choice but to keep playing, get back to what we do. It’s a game of runs and sometimes it’s not going to fall your way, but we kept faith and kept battling, and we came out on top in the end.”

SIVA, PEYTON
ALBA Berlin

“It was very tough [sitting out at the end], but I had full confidence in my teammates, Martin got a chance to rest and he’s been great for us all game, Luke stepped up really big, Landry came in and got the rebounds and made two free throws. Everybody did a great job of making the little plays and I’ve got a lot of confidence in my team. We did a great job of hitting the glass, they’re a very good team and we just tried to limit their chances on the glass, They went around 50% from the three-point line so that was tough but you can’t take away everything, they’re a good team and I’m just glad we got the victory and we’re heading back to Valencia.”

[On the basket to force overtime] "We drew up a play to get Rokas [Giedraitis] a good shot. It came out, they switched, we swang it back and for me, I was just in attack mode. I wanted to get to the basket, we were in the bonus, so if they fouled me, I could go back to the free throw line, make two, but I am glad it went in and we had to take the game to overtime. Everybody stepped up big in the extra period, so I am very happy. I am very excited - to be honest with you, I didn't want them to eliminate us in our home court, so we go back down there and give it another shot. We played a good game down there and they shot the hell out of it today, and we won. We will continue to hit the glass, that was a big factor today. We will see how it goes."

SAN EMETERIO, FERNANDO
Valencia Basket
"We knew it was going to be very difficult to win in here, and we were very competitive. We were close to winning the game but in the end, we were not able to get the win. We now have to focus on Game 3 on Monday. We dominated the offensive board in Game 1 and they did that tonight. That is a critical battle - whoever wins that in Game 3, will be on the right track to win."
THOMAS, MATT
Valencia Basket
"We were right there, and we are disappointed. We have another opportunity on Monday - we have to be focused and ready for it. We just didn't make enough plays down the stretch and they made a couple more. In a game that close, it comes down to a couple of small things and they made more plays down the stretch. It was great to have so many fans here, it says a lot about them."
VAN ROSSOM, SAM
Valencia Basket
"Both teams played well today but we came up short. It went down to details at the end of the game. We were close, but we have another opportunity on Monday and have to give 100%. Our fans will push us like they did today. With them in our home court, we always get a push of energy. We will try to feed off that energy and play a good game."
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