Anwil Wloclawek won its last home game of the season against Besiktas ColaTurka by 74-62 and therefore, left the Turkish team out of the race for the elimination rounds. Besiktas had a slim chance to advance provided that they defeated Anwil and Strasbourg lost, but by falling in Poland, the team says goodbye to the competition and allows Strasbourg to qualify without even playing. In Group B, Anwil improves to 3-6 while Besiktas drops to last place with a 2-7. Strasbourg, with a 4-4 before playing its game against FMP, advanced mathematically. The game was really close and was marked by two bursts by Anwil that allowed the hosts to open a solid gap in the score to get the win. Andrzej Pluta led the winners with 19 points, newcomer Goran Jagodnik and Otis Hill had 13 apiece and Nikola Otasevic chipped in 10. For Besiktas, Jamel Thomas led the way with 26 points and Ivan McFarlin added 13.
Goran Jagodnik made his debut with Anwil scoring the first basket of the game and he then soon added a three-pointer to make it 7-0 for the hosts. Donney Harvey and Jamel Thomas finally appeared for Besiktas with 5 straight points and Erdal Bibo soon added his bucket for a 0-7 run that tied the game. Baskets came in scarce and after a few missed plays, Brooks Sales allowed the guests to jump ahead for the first time with a 8-9. Nikola Otasevic was the other offensive option for Anwil, until Wiktor Grudzinski added a three for the hosts. Thomas however, maintained Besiktas in the game by himself with four straight points for 15-13. But Zbigniew Bialek had enough time to make it 17-13 for Anwil after one quarter. Ivan McFarlin's three-point play allowed Besiktas to stay close starting the second period. Two more free throws by him were replied to by Bartkomiej Woloszyn with a triple making it 5 points in a row for him and a 24-20 Anwil edge. McFarlin stormed over Anwil's defense, forcing a timeout of the hosts, who saw how Andrzej Pluta stepped up to score now. His triple made it 31-32 but Baris Guney did the same maintaining Besiktas ahead, 31-35. Pluta was soon up to 9 points but Aubrey Reese also scored 4 straight points to leave Besiktas ahead at the break, 35-38.
Jagodnik and Harvey traded points to start the second half, but a 7-0 run by Anwil capped by Jagodnik's triple allowed the hosts to pull away to 49-41. Pluta's free throws made it a double-digit lead for Anwil 51-41, and the burst even continued with five straight points by Otis Hill as the lead escalated to 56-41. McFarlin finally broke the spell for Besiktas breaking the 14-0 run with a free throw. Pluta was still the referent of Anwil in offense but Thomas blasted a triple to keep Besiktas alive, 60-47. Thomas also opened the last period with a three and then a layup to put Besiktas within 8 points, 60-52. Bialek finally got Anwil moving but Besiktas was biting behind despite the 7 offensive rebounds of the hosts at that point. The game was rocky and points were still scarce, so every basket was worth its weight in gold. Reese posted two free throws to make it 62-56, and so did Anwil's Mark Dickel to maintain the distances. Pluta's triple came between Thomas and McFarlin buckets, but time was running out and Anwil maintained a 7point marging with two minutes to go. Five straight points fell in for Anwil including Bialek's triple, as the guests raced to miss three-point shots. The hosts had now a 12-point margin going into the final minute and were, at least, able to give the fans a win to say goodbye to the ULEB Cup this season in Wloclawek.
Tuesday, January 9, 2007