Real Madrid avenged a shock opening night loss to EiffelTowers Den Bosch with a convincing 84-61 on Tuesday night. Madrid led 25-13 after 10 minutes and retained a double-digit advantage for the rest of the game. Axel Hervelle led the way with 16 points and 6 rebounds in 23 minutes – part of an effort that saw 10 players play at least 13 minutes each. Marko Tomas added 10 points for Real, which improved to 3-3 in Group D and opened up a two-game lead over Dexia Mons and EiffelTowers for the fourth and last spot leading to the elimination rounds. EiffelTowers dropped to 1-5, losing its fifth straight since its sensational win over Madrid. Travis Young led Real with 22, Leon Rodgers added 14 and Marcel Aarts finished with 7 points and 10 rebounds for the Dutch-League champs.
Kerem Tunceri began the game scoring a three-pointer, but Young soon hit another three after an offensive rebound to even things out. However then Den Bosch went scoreless for 3 minutes, while Charles Smith and Hervelle scored from downtown. Hervelle drove to the basket to add a layup that capped an 8-0 run for the hosts. The two teams began to exchange baskets as Hervelle continued to produce easy points in the paint for Real, and Venson Hamilton joined the party as the hosts started to pull away. Felipe Reyes was able to assist Hervelle for an easy two being fouled. He completed a three-point play to put Real ahead by 14 with three-and-a-half minutes to till halftime. Young kept EiffelTowers alive with a quick layup and two free throws, but Louis Bullock responded quickly from the three-point line. Bullock popped in another from beyond the arc and Alex Mumbru gave Real Madrid its largest lead, 43-26, at the break.
The second half began with Real Madrid’s intense defense producing a fastbreak that allowed Smith to finish the play with some flare above the rim. Rodgers found an open spot to hit a three, but Tunceri responded in transition with a short jumper. Young kept EiffelTowers fighting up as he drove to the basket on a fastbreak to score an uncontested layup, but Bullock was able to hit yet another three to set things straight (50-31). Den Bosch showed good work on a pick-and-roll to let Aarts dunk the ball. Young found the right spot for a short jumper and Rodgers chipped in with a layup as he elevated the ball over Ratko Varda to keep Real Madrid 19 points ahead. Eduardo Hernandez Sonseca added a short jumper and Smith an uncontested dunk to put the locals up 21, but Young hit a buzzer from beyond the arc to make it 60-42 with 10 minutes to go. Robert Owens was assisted by Young in transition to score an open three, but Tomas responded quickly with a pair of layups and free throw to make it a 20-point game and essentially secure the victory for the locals. Madrid kept adding points thanks to Raul Lopez and Tomas, who showed some energy at both ends. Aarts dunked again, but Tomas made a steal and dished to Hervelle, who finished the play from above the hoop to the delight of the fans as Real coasted to victory.
Tuesday, December 5, 2006