Barcelona follows Doellman, Thomas into first place
FC Barcelona remained picture perfect in killer Group C by pulling away steadily all night to a resounding 86-67 victory over visiting PGE Turow Zgorzelec on Friday. The victory combined with Fenerbahce Ulker Istanbul losing on Thursday gave Barcelona sole possession of first place in Group C with a 3-0 record, while Turow remained winless through as many games. Justin Doellman scored all of his 20 points in the first half and added 8 rebounds to lead the winners, but they had they still had Turow shadowing them until late in the third quarter, when it was 54-49. That's when Alex Abrines scored 10 of his points in 3 spectacular minutes that broke the game open for good. Deshaun Thomas poured in 17 points for Barcelona, while Ante Tomic scored 10 to go with 9 rebounds. Once again for Turow, the duo of Damian Kulig and Mardy Collins led the scoring with 19 and 15 points respectively, while Uros Nikolic came off the bench for 9 in 6 minutes.
Doellman lights the spark
Doellman and Marcelinho Huertas got Barcelona going with three-point strikes on their team's first two possessions before Ivan Zigeranovic dropped in a layup for Turow. Barcelona then went inside for a pair of baskets by Tomic that Collins answered himself, but when Huertas went behind his back to Thomas for a fastbreak dunk, Barca led 15-6 and Turow needed a timeout. Kulig got on the scoreboard with a triple, but Turow let Doellman follow his own shot and drill another three to make it 20-9. Collins sparked Turow's reaction with a fastbreak layup and dunk before Nemanja Jaramaz came off the bench and struck from downtown. Kulig went back to the arc for another blast and Vlad Moldoveanu got to the free throw line, cutting Barcelona's lead to 23-21 after one quarter.
Turow ties and Barcelona reacts
Mychal Chylinski opened the second quarter scoring to tie it 23-23 for Turow before Barcelona used free throws by Doellman plus baskets by Maceij Lampe and Brad Oleson to gain a new cushion. Despite Kulig's next basket, Tibor Pleiss entered and added to Barcelona's lead, which Doellman and Thomas soon pushed higher. Nikolic's 5 points in a row helped Turow stay within 36-31, and after a steal and dunk by Doellman, Kulig would do the same at 40-35. But a triple by Oleson started Barcelona on a 7-2 closing run highlighted by him feeding Lampe for a layup on the way to halftime and Barcelona's biggest lead yet, 49-37.
Abrines breaks it open
Collins sparked Turow with a triple on Turow's first shot after the break, while Tomic returned an offensive rebound for Barcelona at 50-42. Chylinski and Thomas traded baskets before Tony Taylor got his first for Turow and Filip Dylewicz drove to cut the difference to 54-46. Soon, Chylinski reappeared with a blast from the arc to force a Barcelona timeout at 54-49. The hosts responded with Bostjan Nachbar lobbing to Pleiss for an easy dunk and Thomas posting up to make it 58-50. Abrines came out of nowhere to block Kulig and raced the other way for a triple in transition before Thomas dropped another jumper to keep Barcelona safe at 63-50. Nikolic got 4 points back on free throws, but gave back to the hosts by getting tagged with a technical foul that turned into a four-point play for Barcelona when Abrines drilled a triple. Abrines was not done, either, as he popped off a screen for another three-pointer to finish the third quarter with Barcelona enjoying its widest lead yet, 72-55.
Barca guards big lead
Nachbar opened the final quarter with his own shot from the arc and Thomas busted loose for a fastbreak layup and the first 20-plus lead, 76-55. Soon, Huertas was left alone to bury his second triple as the difference kept climbing to 83-57. After a Turow timeout, Kulig worked on his team's scoring to get the visitors within 85-67 as Barcelona eased to the finish with its unbeaten record intact and exclusive hold on first place in Group C.
Friday, October 31, 2014