2015-16Top 16Round 3
January 14, 2016 CET: 20:15

Zvezda downs Panathinaikos in Athens for maiden Group E victory

In a tough, defensive showdown that went down to the final minutes, Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade registered its first win in Top 16 Group E by downing Panathinaikos Athens 63-74 in front of 11,000 fans in the Greek capital on Thursday. Both teams now have 1-2 records in Group E. Maik Zirbes led the winners with 12 points, Branko Lazic and Vladimir Stimac each added 11 while Stefan Jovic flirted with a triple-double and finished with 9 points, 8 rebounds and 8 assists for Zvezda. James Gist led Panathinaikos with 15 points and James Feldeine and Miroslav Raduljica each had 12 for the hosts. Stimac and Nemanja Dangubic shined early to give Zvezda a 14-16 lead after 10 minutes. A coast-to-coast layup by Feldeine gave Panathinaikos its last lead, 28-26. Zvezda found a go-to guy in Zirbes, who helped the visitors restore a 34-38 lead at halftime. Raduljica brought the Greens within 48-50, but a 0-9 run that Marko Guduric capped with a fast break layup boosted Zvezda's lead to 48-59 early in the fourth quarter. Lazic and Zirbes helped the visitors keep a safe margin from that moment until the final buzzer.

First quarter: Visitors shine on defense to take lead

Gist got Panathinaikos going with a put-back layup, which Ognjen Kuzmic followed with a second-chance basket for a 4-0 lead. Zvezda was held scoreless for more than two minutes until Tarence Kinsey banked in a close shot. Panathinaikos kept dominating the game with good defense, not allowing Zvezda to get Quincy Miller or Zirbes involved. The Greens also struggled to score, however, and a layup by Dangubic tied it at 4-4. Raduljica sank a jump hook, which Stimac erased with a layup. Gist found Nick Calathes for a fast break layup before Dangubic nailed a four-meter jumper. Calathes split free throws and a three-pointer by Jovic gave Zvezda its first lead, 9-11. Dimitris Diamantidis answered from downtown, but Lazic shined with a layup-plus-foul and a jump hook by Stimac boosted the guests' lead to 12-16. A dunk by Georgios Papagiannis brought Panathinaikos within 14-16 after 10 minutes.

Second quarter: Zirbes keeps Zvezda in charge

Vladimir Jankovic nailed a three-pointer early in the quarter, as Panathinaikos regained momentum on defense with big blocks by Papagiannis and Antonis Fotsis. Lazic rescued the guests with a bomb from downtown, which prompted Panathinaikos to call timeout at 17-19. Diamantidis made free throws, but Simonovic had a block on Calathes and hit a three-pointer at the other end for a 19-22 Zvezda edge. Calathes finished a great Panathinaikos play with a fast break layup and Kuzmic bettered Maik Zirbes's jump hook with a three-point play. Zirbes split foul shots, but Feldeine followed a coast-to-coast layup with free throws for a 28-26 Panathinaikos lead. Miller knocked down a couple of free throws and an unstoppable Zirbes gave Zvezda the lead, 28-32. Gist drew a foul and hit both attempts from the line, but Zirbes scored down low and a dunk by Dangubic made it a 5-point game. Kinsey scored again, but Papagiannis and a buzzer-beating layup by Gist fixed the halftime score at 34-38.

Third quarter: Stimac keeps visitors ahead

Jovic buried one from beyond the arc immediately after the break, as Panathinaikos struggled to organize its offense and committed a couple of turnovers. A red-hot Jovic fired in an eight-meter triple to give Zvezda its first double-digit lead, 34-44. The Greens were held scoreless for more than three minutes until Feldeine stepped up with a driving layup. Miller took over with a big basket off a spin move that caused Panathinaikos call timeout at 36-46. Calathes tried to change things with a backdoor layup and a jump hook by Raduljica gave the Greens hope at 40-46. Stimac scored around the basket, but Raduljica provided a highlight with a big dunk off the baseline and soon added free throws that made it a 4-point game. After Kinsey fed Stimac for a layup, Feldeine answered with a second-chance basket and a jump hook by Raduljica brought Panathinaikos even closer, 48-50. Stimac scored again and a jumper by Vasilije Micic gave Zvezda a 48-54 edges.

Fourth quarter: Zvezda holds on for historic win

Micic buried a three-pointer early in the quarter and a dunk by Guduric made it an 11-point game. Panathinaikos called timeout and Feldeine took over with a bomb from downtown. Simonovic scored in transition, but he didn't find much help around. Meanwhile, Raduljica answered with a two-handed slam to get within 53-61. Zvezda improved its defense when it mattered most, as the Greens even missed free throw attempts. Meanwhile, a three-pointer by Lazic sealed the outcome, 53-64, with four minutes to go. Kinsey made free throws and Stimac split attempts, but Gist brought Panathinaikos a bit closer, 58-67. Lazic and Zirbes buried foul shots, as both teams were now fighting for point difference. Panathinaikos never gave up, but Zvezda went back to Belgrade with a good-as-gold road win.

Vladimir Stimac - Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade - EB15
Thursday, January 14, 2016
Attendance: 7061
By Quarter1234
Panathinaikos Athens14201415
Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade16221620
End of Quarter1234
Panathinaikos Athens14344863
Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade16385474
Panathinaikos Athens
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
3 PAVLOVIC, SASHA 13:35   0/1 0/2   1 1 2     1     2   -4
5 CHARALAMPOPOULOS, VASILIS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
8 JANKOVIC, VLADIMIR 13:24 3 0/4 1/5   2 1 3 1             -1
9 FOTSIS, ANTONIS 18:00     0/3   1 5 6 1     1   1   4
10 RADULJICA, MIROSLAV 15:34 12 5/5   2/2 1   1 1 1 2     3 6 16
12 FELDEINE, JAMES 37:58 12 3/8 1/7 3/4 1 3 4 1   1   2 3 5 4
13 DIAMANTIDIS, DIMITRIS 24:46 5 0/1 1/4 2/4 1 2 3 4   3     2 4 5
14 GIST, JAMES 28:04 15 6/9 0/2 3/4 3   3 2 2       5 3 14
15 CALATHES, NICK 30:17 7 3/8 0/1 1/2 1   1 2 4 1   1 5 4 4
19 PAPAGIANNIS, GEORGIOS 6:14 4 2/4     1   1       1       4
20 LOUNTZIS, MICHALIS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
21 KUZMIC, OGNJEN 12:08 5 2/4   1/1 2 3 5   1       2 2 9
Team           1 2 3     3          
Totals 200:00 63 21/44 3/24 12/17 15 17 32 12 8 11 2 3 23 24 55
        47.7% 12.5% 70.6%
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
Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
1 KINSEY, TARENCE 28:17 9 3/4 0/2 3/4 3 3 6 4 1 2 1   3 4 16
4 REBIC, NIKOLA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
6 DANGUBIC, NEMANJA 16:42 6 3/3 0/1   1 2 3 1           1 10
10 LAZIC, BRANKO 22:45 11 1/1 2/3 3/3 2 1 3 1   1     4 3 12
12 SIMANIC, BORISA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
13 MICIC, VASILIJE 15:05 5 1/2 1/1         3   2   1 1 1 4
19 SIMONOVIC, MARKO 19:43 5 1/1 1/4     1 1 1 1   1     1 7
23 GUDURIC, MARKO 10:33 2 1/3 0/2     2 2     1   1 2 1 -3
24 JOVIC, STEFAN 24:55 9 0/1 3/5     8 8 8   4     4 1 15
30 MILLER, QUINCY 22:06 4 1/3 0/3 2/2   5 5 1   1     3 3 4
33 ZIRBES, MAIK 16:50 12 3/6   6/10 1 3 4   1 1 1   4 5 11
51 STIMAC, VLADIMIR 23:04 11 5/8   1/6 1 5 6 1 2 1     3 3 11
Team           3   3     1         2
Totals 200:00 74 19/32 7/21 15/25 11 30 41 20 5 14 3 2 24 23 89
        59.4% 33.3% 60%

Head Coaches

Panathinaikos Athens
"Congratulations to Crvena Zvezda because they played fast and hard, used their bodies and the physical game. For us, it is one of those nights that nothing is working . We didn't play our game, especially on offense, but also in defense and we paid for this. We lacked toughness and energy. Our statistics show the problem. We had a very low shooting percentage and dished only 12 assists. I understood that something was wrong during the morning shootaround and tonight it was clear that we didn't enjoy the game. I just asked Miroslav Radulica what was wrong tonight and he didn't have an answer. I didn't recognize my team tonight; it seemed like another one that appeared here instead of us. We have to react immediately, this is our duty and we have to do it like men. We need to find our energy, toughness, freshness, which we missed tonight."
Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade
"I want to congratulate my players for this great win here. From the very first moment up to the end, we played the right way, as we planned to. We made some mistakes in defense and lost a few rebounds in the first half and allowed Panathinaikos to get 9 offensive boards, but in the second half, the situation was much better. We played smart and found the path to the basket, while our defense didn't let Panathinaikos play as they are used to. They tried to come back, but we got the control and defended our lead. I think that our consistency in defense and offense was the main factor for the victory."


Panathinaikos Athens
"It is a bad defeat, but not the end of the world. We played without energy, desire and fire against a team that had all of that. If you see what happened tonight, you will realize that we weren't ready to play that match and we have to improve our performance immediately. Red Star Belgrade played with lots of determination, passion and toughness and they deserved to beat us. When you wear the green jersey and play for Panathinaikos, you have to react and not allow your opponents to play as they want. I always believe that even in a very bad night, you have somehow to find an opportunity to react, but tonight it didn't work out."
Panathinaikos Athens
"[Crvena Zvezda] played at full strength and they had a lot of toughness and determination. On the opposite side, we lacked energy and didn't manage to react and play our game even for some minutes, in order to come back. They were leading for 40 minutes and forced us to stay behind and be nervous."
Panathinaikos Athens
"It is an ugly loss, which we didn't expect. We played bad in both defense and offense against a team that managed to do all the right things. We missed a lot of easy shots and allowed them to grab many offensive boards and have second scoring chances, while our pick-and-roll defense didn't work out. Now we are 1-2 and have to work harder to hunt road victories and recover."
Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade
"I feel great because we got a great road victory. It is very difficult to win here against such a great opponent and we did it tonight. I think than we were better at both ends and played a very solid and effective game. We moved the ball very well, scored some big shots and didn't allow them to play their game. There is no doubt that team effort is the key to success."
Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade
"The key for our success was playing together, believing in each other, playing defense and getting them off the glass. In the first three minutes, they had like 3 offensive rebounds. I think they probably finished the first quarter with like 8 or 9. You can't win against a team like that [with those numbers] so we kind of buckled down, started to rebound and just to make plays. That was it, pretty much."
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