2006-07Regular SeasonRound 13
January 25, 2007 CET: 19:45

Zalgiris Kaunas gave its fans a nice present in the form of a 77-66 victory over Aris TT Bank

In its last Euroleague home game this season, Zalgiris Kaunas gave its fans a nice present in the form of a 77-66 in Group C victory over Aris TT Bank in Kaunas, Lithuania on Thursday. Zalgiris broke a 10-game losing streak and improved to 2-11 in the Group C standings. Aris, which could have qualified for the Top 16 had it won, instead dropped to 6-7 and into a three-way tie for fourth place in the group standings with Pau-Orthez and Eldo Napoli. Aris, however, will mathematically advance to the Top 16 if it downs Winterthur FC Barcelona at home next week. Jonas Maciulis led the winners with 16 points. Paulius Jankunas posted a double-double of 14 points and 11 rebounds, Tanoka Beard scored 12 points and grabbed 11 rebounds for another double-double while newcomer DeJuan Collins had 11 points for Zalgiris. Mike Wilkinson pumped in 18 points for Aris, while Jeremiah Massey added 17 and Terrel Castle 13. Aris trailed by as many as 22 early in the second half before rallying to within 70-66 before Zalgiris finished the scoring at the foul line.

Zalgiris began the game with new point guard DeJuan Collins in the starting lineup, but it was Marcelinho Machado who hit an off-the-dribble jumper to open the scoring. Aris responded with good ball distribution that turned into 7 quick points shared by Wilkinson, Terrel Castle and Giorgos Sigalas. Zalgiris had Paulius Jankunas to respond with a three-point play. Beard followed him with a layup and free throws that gave Zalgiris a new lead, 9-7. Collins shined then with a nice assist to Jonas Maciulis for a dunk and a driving layup for his first points in a Zalgiris jersey. For Aris, Wilkinson put back a miss, but he was very much alone now in scoring. Meanwhile, Zalgiris rolled ahead by double-digits, 21-11, on another fastbreak layup by Maciulis and a difficult jump-hook by Beard. Wilkinson tried to wake his team up with outside bomb. but Kirk Penney matched it for Zalgiris. Aris still seemed slow and Zalgiris continued to take advantage, especially inside where Hanno Mottolla made a layup-plus-free throw to close a 29-18 first quarter for the hosts.

Aris tried to come back quick as Scales made a free throw and Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf drove for a layup early in the second quarter. Zalgiris turned to Maciulis, who again proved the go-to guy, connecting from downtown and feeding Jankunas for an easy basket. Zalgiris didn‘t tried to change what worked well, going inside where Mottola drew fouls and made 3 free throws. Maciulis added a pair himself and a jumper that Jankunas copied. Soon, another basket by Collins gave Zalgiris a 39-26 advantage. Massey broke the spell for Aris with driving layup, however the Zalgiris offense looked solid as ever as Machado nailed a triple from the wing and Maciulis put back his own miss to make it 50-30 after the first half.

A free throw by Maciulis plus baskets by Beard and Jankunas gave Zalgiris the game's biggest lead, 55-33. Savvas Iliadis made a free throw, Wilkinson put back his second and Massey nailed a fadeaway jumper to revive Aris. The guests used an up-tempo and aggressive style to surprise the hosts as Iliadis and Massey shared 3 more free throws. Soon, Aris was pushing the ball inside to Massey for an in-your-face dunk that reduced the gap to 58-43. Halfcourt pressing by Aris forced a turnover by Beard that was followed by a fourth foul on Jankunas. Collins stepped up for his new team with a driving basket-plus-free throw, but Wilkinson felt comfortable inside to challenge Beard, who also had foul trouble, and score 4 consecutive points. Castle made a jumper and Massey continued the Aris comeback with a wild dunk that gave fresh air to the visitors as the third quarter ended 64-53.

Massey opened final quarter with layup that changed the Aris deficit to single digits, 64-55, but Collins picked up his new teammates by hitting a pair of free throws. Mottolla joined his Zalgiris frontcourt pals with his fourth foul. Aris improved on defense and Zalgiris couldn‘t find the way through until Beard scored under the basket. Aris called a timeout and Castle came out after it to bury a three-pointer that reduced the edge to 68-62. Collins answered with a basket to beat the shot-clock but Aris kept coming with a dunk by Massey and a coast-to-coast layup by Castle that trimmed the difference to 70-66. After a timeout, Zalgiris saw Jankunas launch an airball and Maciulis commit a turnover. Wilkinson fouled out for Aris, however, and Zalgiris got a mid-range jumper from Maciulis to steady itself. Now, fouls by Dimitrios Tsaldaris and Simonas Serapinas sent Machado to the line and he made all 4 free throws while Jankunas added another to preserve a 77-66 score and gave Zalgiris a long-awaited victory in the front of its fans.

Thursday, January 25, 2007
Antanas Pakula, Kaunas
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Attendance: 4715
By Quarter1234
Aris TT Bank18122313
End of Quarter1234
Aris TT Bank18305366
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 GINEVICIUS, VIDAS 6:00 3   1/2     1 1   1 2     1   1
5 MACHADO, MARCELINHO 26:15 9 1/3 1/3 4/4   7 7 2 2 2     4 2 12
6 BEARD, TANOKA 31:00 12 5/8   2/2 3 8 11 2   6 1 2 4 1 12
7 PECIUKAS, VAIDOTAS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
8 MACIULIS, JONAS 36:15 16 5/9 1/2 3/4 2 1 3 2 2 2     3 4 16
9 KALNIETIS, MANTAS 3:30                   1         -1
10 JASIKEVICIUS, VYTENIS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
13 JANKUNAS, PAULIUS 32:15 14 5/7 0/2 4/7 4 7 11 2   2     4 6 20
14 SILINSKIS, DARIUS 1:15                              
20 PENNEY, KIRK 13:15 3   1/2     2 2     2     1   1
25 MOTTOLA, HANNO 15:30 9 1/3   7/9   1 1 1     2   4 6 11
41 COLLINS, DeJUAN 34:45 11 4/7 0/1 3/3   4 4 5 2 4     3 6 17
Team                   4           4
Totals 200:00 77 21/37 4/12 23/29 9 31 40 14 11 21 3 2 24 25 93
        56.8% 33.3% 79.3%
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
Aris TT Bank
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 CASTLE, TERREL 28:30 13 4/12 1/1 2/2 2 3 5 1 1 3     3 4 10
5 SIGALAS, GIORGOS 11:45 3   1/2     2 2   1       5 1 1
7 SERAPINAS, SIMONAS 9:00                   2     3   -5
8 SCALES, ALEX 19:45 3 0/2 0/2 3/8 1   1   1 2     1 6 -1
10 ILIADIS, SAVVAS 27:00 5 0/6   5/6 2 2 4 1   2   1 1 4 3
11 WILKINSON, MIKE 27:45 18 6/11 1/2 3/3 3 6 9 2 2   1 2 5 2 21
12 FLETCHER, KEVIN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
14 MASSEY, JEREMIAH 34:00 17 7/16 0/1 3/5 6 3 9   6       2 4 22
15 GIANNOULIS, YANNIS 7:30 2 1/2       1 1   1       1 1 3
16 TSALDARIS, DIMITRIOS 14:00   0/2 0/2           1 1 1   2   -5
17 PANTELIADIS, SPYRIDON 10:00 2     2/2                 2 2 2
20 ABDUL-RAUF, MAHMOUD 10:45 3 0/3 1/2     1 1 2             2
Team                   8 1         7
Totals 200:00 66 18/54 4/12 18/26 14 18 32 6 21 11 2 3 25 24 60
        33.3% 33.3% 69.2%
Head coach: MAZZON, ANDREA
This game is not yet played

Head Coaches

“In the first half we played so good that I had no reproaches to my players. Everything went just right. Our opponents were off the rhythm. However, the third quarter showed that you have to play all 40 minutes if you want to win. I think our players, especially the frontcourt players, got tired and we started to make mistakes. We wanted to win the game. Our new player DeJuan Collins played pretty good. He is smart and follows coach’s directions. He is still not aggressive enough, but he is a freshman in the team. He played good defense tonight. We wanted to win very much, but Aris’s halfcourt court press got us off the rhythm. We missed some open shots and some players became nervous. But in the end we won and I am very happy with my very first victory in the Euroleague.”
Aris TT Bank
“I give my credit to Zalgiris. It was nice to play here in such an atmosphere. Zalgiris earned the victory tonight. We had very poor start. We played very bad in the first half. We missed shots from under the basket as well as from the line. After the halftime break, we tried to make comeback and got within 4 points, but it was not enough. Zalgiris was not the same team that we played against in the first leg game. They added a very good player in Collins and their game had more quality. A few games before we were the second best defensive team in Euroleague and the first defensive team in our local championship, but recent games showed that we still have to polish our defense.”


“We had a very good first half. We played at a fast pace and had a lot of opportunities for open shots. We controlled the game in the beginning and many possessions finished with fastbreaks. But in the second half we let up. Aris started to play more aggressive. They used a half court press and we started to make mistakes. The referees made a few questionable calls and Aris got close. But they made some hasty shots at the end and we managed to win.”
“We were aggressive offensively. Lots of guys had good shots, open shots, easy baskets. We haven’t played like that for majority of the season. Playing like that, it was like a present to the fans, but the main present we gave to ourselves, because we showed that we can play and compete at the high level.”
Aris TT Bank
“In the first half we came out playing slower. There was no specific reason for that, but they played better and faster. During halftime, our coach said to come out and play hard. We had to concentrate. We didn’t do that in the first half and that’s reason why we are leaving with the loss.”
Aris TT Bank
“We played a very bad first half. When you play on the road, you can not play like that. We dug ourselves a hole in the first half. In the second half we tried to climb back, but we just couldn’t finish down the stretch. I am proud of guys who played well in the second half, but we needed to come up and play better in the first half. We are not thinking about our next Euroleague game and how crucial it will be. We have a game this weekend and we are preparing for this game at first.”
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