Gran Canaria Grupo Dunas showed its power and stayed undefeated in Group A by downing two-time ULEB Cup semifinalists Hemofarm 73-81 in Vrsac, Serbia on Tuesday night. Gran Canaria improved to 2-0 and will share the top stop in Group A with the winner of the game between Sluc Basket Nancy and Lietuvos Rytas, while Hemofarm dropped to 2-0 and needs to start winning right away in order to reach the elimination rounds. Jim Moran was the man of the game, burying 5 three-pointers in crunch time and scoring 18 points of his 25 points in the final 11 minutes to win the game from Gran Canaria. Moran made 8 of 9 shots tonight, including 6 of 7 triples. Kornel David and Tre Simmons - in his final game with Gran Canaria - each added 13 points while Victor Baldo had 11 for the winners. Nebojsa Joksimovic had 21 points for Hemofarm, Milenko Topic added 17, Predrag Suput 14 and Velimir Radinovic 11 for the hosts, who led 60-50 early in the final period. Moran had 9 points in a game-breaking 0-16 run which allowed Gran Canaria to control the game in the final 5 minutes.
Hemofarm had a strong start, as Velimir Radinovic hit free throws and Milenko Topic buried a triple from the top of the key for a 5-0 lead. Radinovic broke a 7-0 run with a layup, as Gran Canaria went scoreless for almost 3 minutes until Marcus Norris found his way for a close basket. Suput and Kornel David exchanged layups, but Nebojsa Joksimovic stepped up with his first basket to give Hemofarm an 11-4 lead. David hit free throws and Simmons buried a triple to get Gran Canaria within 13-6. Milos Borisov answered from downtown, igniting a 7-2 run which Joksimovic capped with a layup for a nine-point Hemofarm lead, 20-11. Another three-pointer by Simmons, a mid-range jumper by Jim Moran and a put-back basket by Jackson Vroman brought Gran Canaria within 20-18 after 10 minutes. Simmons opened the second quarter with a jumper which tied the game, 20-20, after a 0-9 run. Suput and Vladan Vukosavljevic stepped up with 5 unanswered points, but a three-pointer by Moran started a 0-9 run which Sitapha Savane capped with back-to-back baskets to give Gran Canaria a 25-29 edge. Topic and Joksimovic hit free throws to keep Hemofarm in the game. Joksimovic shined with a driving layup and Suput added a jump hook to give the hosts a 33-30. Victor Baldo hit a short jumper, but a free throw by Joksimovic and a buzzer-beating layup by Topic gave Hemofarm a 36-32 edge at halftime.
Joksimovic and David exchanged layups, but Gran Canaria kept missing open shots after the break. Meanwhile, Radinovic made free throws and Topic another triple to give Hemofarm a 43-34 lead. David and Joksimovic also scored from downtown while a free throw by Radinovic pushed Hemofarm's margin into double digits, 47-37. Simmons scored in penetration and David hit free throws, while Savane and Sergio Perez stepped up with quick baskets to give the guests some hope at 51-45. Topic hit free throws while Radinovic added a layup-plus-foul for a 57-47 Hemofarm lead. Moran came off the bench and immediately buried a triple to get the guests within 57-50 after 30 minutes. Joksimovic came off a screen to bury a triple but a red hot Moran followed a wild four-point play and with another from downtown to bring the guests back to life, 60-57. Baldo scored inside, Guerra shined with a reverse layup while Moran added another close basket to give Gran Canaria a 60-63. The guests did not allow any shots now and Hemofarm just could not find the way to the basket. Meanwhile, Baldo capped a game-breaking 0-16 run with free throws for a 60-66 Gran Canaria lead. Topic finally stepped up with a jumper but Mario Fernandez hit foul shots while Moran - who else? - two more from downtown for a 66-74 Gran Canaria lead with under 2 minutes to go. Free throws by Vukosavljevic and a quick triple by Joksimovic brought Hemofarm within 71-76 already in the final minute, but David, Baldo and Norris sealed a big road win for Gran Canaria in style.
Tuesday, November 7, 2006