Fenerbahce Ulker defeated Bizkaia Bilbao basket 70-73
Fenerbahce Ulker grabbed its second consecutive win in Turkish Airlines Euroleague regular season Group A by edging Bizkaia Bilbao Basket 70-73 on the road on Wednesday. Fenerbahce moved up to 2-2 in Group A and improved its chances to go to the Top 16. Bilbao went down to 1-3, registered its third consecutive loss and needs to bounce back right away, starting with its game against regional rivals Caja Laboral next week. Bojan Bogdanovic led the winners with 19 points in just 22 minutes. Curtis Jerrells added 15 while James Gist had 10 for Fenerbahce. Marko Banic had 17 points for Bilbao while Kostas Vasileadis added 15. Bogdanovic had 9 points late in the first quarter to give Fenerbahce a 21-26 lead after 10 minutes. Bilbao improved its defense and Banic allowed his team to get a 36-32 margin at the break. Bilbao seemed to have the game under control, as a driving basket by Aaron Jackson gave the hosts a 67-59 lead with 5:12 to go. Fenerbahce held Bilbao scoreless for more than 5 minutes while Jerrells, Onan and Emir Preldzic combined for all points in a 0-14 run that sealed the outcome, 67-71, with 20.5 seconds left.
Thabo Sefolosha got Fenerbahce going with a three-pointer from the left wing and soon split free throws with a 0-4 lead. Vasileadis answered from downtown but Gist copied him in the other end. Jackson joined the three-point shootout to get Bilbao within 6-7. Roko Ukic sank his one-handed floater in the lane but Alex Mumbru answered with an easy basket and added a fast break layup to give the hosts their first lead, 10-9. D'or Fischer nailed a five-meter jumper that Gasper Vidmar matched with a two-chance power layup. Vasileadis sank free throws and a put-back layup by Dimitrios Mavroeidis forced Fenerbahce to call timeout at 16-11. Ukic hit foul shots but Axel Hervelle matched those with a six-meter jumper. Gist shined with a follow-up layup and free throws, as Bilbao started to miss open shots from beyond the arc. Vasileadis and Banic hit free throws but Fenerbahce found a go-to guy in Bogdanovic, who shined with a three-point play and added a wild driving layup, free throws and a turnaround jumper for a 21-26 lead after 10 minutes.
Bilbao managed to get its captain involved early in the second quarter, as Banic followed a jumper with a layup to make it a one-point game, 25-26. Jerrells stepped up with a layup off a steal but he didn't find much help around. Meanwhile, a three-pointer by Vasileadis tied it at 28-28. Vidmar split free throws and Onan found space for a wide open triple, good for a 28-32 Fenerbahce lead. Fischer set the crowd on fire with a two-handed dunk and Jackson scored off a steal for a 32-32 tie. Fener tried Preldzic at point guard but Mumbru managed to stop him from circulating the ball. Meanwhile, Banic sank a long jumper and scored in transition to make coach Neven Spahija call timeout. Bilbao had been all over the place in defense, limiting the guests to just 6 second-quarter points and forcing 9 first-half turnovers, enough for the hosts to keep a 36-32 margin as both teams headed back to their locker rooms.
Preldzic downed a three-pointer immediately after the break and fed Bogdanovic for a layup that put the guests back ahead, 36-37. A reverse layup by Mumbru got the crowd involved but Bogdanovic stayed on fire with a turnaround jumper. Mumbru insisted with another basket and a mid-range jumper by Hervelle gave the hosts some fresh air, 42-39. Hervelle scored around the basket but Bogdanovic bettered that with a three-pointer that got Fenerbahce within 44-42. Hervelle shined with an alleyoop layup but got injured in that play. Bogdanovic buried another triple but free throws by Raul Lopez and Banic gave Bilbao a four-point lead, 49-45. Oguz Savas took over with a left-handed jump hook, as Fenerbahce felt more confident with Jerrells and Preldzic together on court. Jerrells struck from downtown to make Fenerbahce regain the lead, 49-50. Lopez followed free throws with a fast break layup and Vasileadis soon gave Bilbao a 55-52 lead. A free throw by Kaya Peker and a buzzer-beating three-point play by Banic fixed the score at 58-53 after three quarters.
Lopez buried a seven-meter bomb early in the fourth quarter, as Bilbao tried a smaller lineup with Vasileadis at small forward. Jerrells fed Gist for a fast break dunk that Banic matched with a backdoor layup. Jerrells buried a three-pointer to give the guests some hope, 63-59. Banic scored in the paint, as Bilbao started to use long possessions to run the game clock down. Jackson took over with a big basket in penetration that made it an eight-point game, 67-59. The hosts had entered the foul bonus, however, and Fenerbahce tried to make the most out of it. Onan made free throws and a three-point by Jerrells got the guests within 67-64. Onan split free throws, as Bilbao kept missing shots in the other end. A fallaway jumper by Jerrells tied the game, 67-67, with under 2 minutes to go. Lopez missed from downtown and free throws by Preldzic completed the guests' comeback, 67-69. Fischer turned the ball over, Sefolosha missed a shot but Onan collected a key steal with 21 seconds left. Preldzic sank foul shots to cap a game-breaking 0-14 run but a three-pointer by Vasileadis got Bilbao within 70-71 with 3 seconds to go. Bilbao fouled on Onan, who made free throws but Vasileadis could not hit an off-balance 10-meter shot at the buzzer.
Wednesday, November 9, 2011