Cedevita Zagreb used its balanced attack and 13 three-pointers, downing Bilbao Basket 89-79 in the Croatian capital on Tuesday. It is the third consecutive win for Cedevita, and the second straight loss for Bilbao, as both teams now have 4-2 record in Group B, but Cedevita holds a tiebreak advantage. The hosts had 9 players scoring between 8 and 13 points, leading for majority of the game. The hosts took the lead for good early in the third quarter, but only sealed the deal in the final 70 seconds with a three-pointer by Goran Suton and a jumper by Nolan Smith who paced the winners with 13 points. Luka Babic and Tomislav Zubcic each scored 11 points, while Ante Delas and Jusuf Nurkic had 10 apiece in victory. For Bilbao, German Gabriel scored 13 of his 17 points in the first quarter, Raul Lopez netted 11, and Alex Mumbru 10 points.
Smith hit a triple, and Miro Bilan got a friendly roll on a jumper to start the game for Cedevita. Dairis Bertans opened the visitors' account with a long two, but fastbreaks by Smith and Allan Ray extended it to 11-2. After a Bilbao timeout, it was a German Gabriel show. He first sunk triple-plus-foul, then added couple more triples, tying it at 15-15. His fourth three-pointer capped a 3-14 run, giving Bilbao 16-22, but before quarter's end, Zubcic and Delas each sunk one from behind the arc for 25-24. After Zoran Vrkic and Roger Grimau put Bilbao back in front at the start of the second, Suton scored from close range, before Delas and Babic hit shots from long range. A coast-to-coast layup from Babic and a baseline dunk from Ivan Ramljak made it 39-31, but the fireworks continued on the other end. Lopez made back-to-back threes as Bilbao tied the game with a 0-8 run, but Smith and Zubcic each hit from downtown to help Cedevita hold 47-45 halftime lead. After the break, triples from Ramljak and Suton kept Cedevita in front from downtown, while three clos-range baskets from Nurkic extended it to 60-53. Mumbru and Antanas Kavaliauskas kept Bilbao in range, and after Delas triple, Bilbao countered through Bertans and Jackie Carmichael, before Grimau beat the buzzer with a coast-to-coast runner and 68-62. At the start of the fourth, Zubcic nailed a triple for 73-64. Lopez made an improbable shot for downtown, but Babic answered with a corner triple on the other end, and Nurkic added a dunk for 78-69. Bertans nailed a three-pointer, and Gabriel added an easy layup, cutting it to 81-76. However, Suton sunk a tough triple to push the lead back to 8 points with 70 seconds to go, and Zubcic closed out the scoring, making sure Cedevita wins get tie-break advantage.
Tuesday, November 19, 2013