Trento suffocates Cedevita to stay perfect
Dolomiti Energia Trento dominated Cedevita Olimpija Ljubljana 61-52 at BLM Group Arena on Tuesday night to remain unbeaten and atop Group D with four wins from as many games. The hosts displayed terrific defense, holding the visitors to just 34 points in the first three quarters. Cedevita dropped to 1-2. Trento trailed 17-19 in the second quarter, but an 11-0 run fueled by Gary Browne right before halftime allowed the hosts to build a 30-22 edge that grew steadily in the second half and peaked at 58-34 in the last period. Browne finished with 14 points and 7 assists and JaCorey Williams added 10 points and 10 rebounds for the winners. Kendrick Perry and Jaka Blazic scored 13 and 12 points, respectively, in defeat.
The hosts had a strong start led by Luke Maye, who scored 5 points in a 9-0 opening run after just 3 minutes. Perry scored a layup and assisted Mikael Hopkins on a fastbreak, right after a timeout, to boost Cedevita. Even though Trento kept controlling the boards, Blazic scored twice from the line to cap a 0-8 run to push the visitors ahead 11-12. Williams and Davide Pascolo came to the rescue from inside to allow Trento to take the lead back, 15-12, at the end of the first quarter. Jarred Jones nailed the first three of the night for Cedevita followed by another basket by Ivan Marinkovic to put the visitors back in front 17-19. Defenses prevailed, as both teams traded blows through Browne and Perry. The former had 6 in a row and then fed Williams inside to make it 27-22. Jeremy Morgan joined the party by pouring in a long three to send both teams to the locker room with Trento on top, 30-22.
Victor Sanders hit from deep after 4 consecutive offensive rebounds by Trento and Williams dunked to keep a safe 35-27 margin for the hosts early after the break. Cedevita continued to struggle against the excellent defense displayed by the hosts. Sanders made it a double-digit lead, 39-27, midway through the third quarter. Things got even worse when Perry headed towards the bench with an injury and, although Trento didn’t excel in offense either, back-to-back triples by Toto Forray and another by Browne plus a pair of free throws by Pascolo increased the gap to 52-32. Edo Muric and Forray exchanged baskets to enter the fourth quarter with Trento clearly in charge, 54-34. With Perry back in action, Cedevita tried to get back and reduced the margin to 58-43 led by him and Blazic, but Trento used a timeout and a triple by Browne to cool the game. Perry scored a layup and Blazic added a couple of free throws to make it 61-49 entering the last minute, but it was too late for the visitors, who used a last three by Jarrod Jones to escape with a less embarrassing defeat, 61-52.
The hosts excelled on defense once again. After holding Promitheas Patras to 51 points in Round 2, Trento has prevented its opponent from scoring more than 70 points in its last three games. Nanterre 92 had just 65 in Round 3, Scavolini Pesaro was stopped at 57 in the domestic competition and Cedevita couldn’t go further than 61 points on this night.
Cedevita trailed by 24 points with 9 minutes left in the last quarter, but when Kendrick Perry rejoined the game after a minor injury, the visitors had a strong reaction and finished with a 3-18 run. The gap was too big, though, and the time remaining was too short.
It wasn’t his best game statistics-wise, but Gary Browne not only led Trento in scoring with 14 points, but also contributed in key moments. He had 6 and 1 assist to boost an 11-0 run to give the lead back to Trento after halftime. He hit a timely three in the third quarter to help this team build a 20-point margin in the third and when Cedevita threatened with a comeback in the last one, he appeared again from deep to cool things down.
Dolomiti Energia Trento will hit the road for Round 5 and visit Herbalife Gran Canaria on Wednesday, October 28. Cedevita Olimpija will return to its home court and host Promitheas Patras the same day.
Tuesday, October 20, 2020