2006-07EighthfinalsRound 2
February 13, 2007 CET: 17:45
Local time: 18:45 SIEMENS ARENA

Lietuvos Rytas edge Snaidero Udine 65-60

Former ULEB Cup champion L. Rytas kept alive its chances for another crown with a dramtic 65-60 victory over Snaidero Udine in the second and last game of their eighthfinal series on Tuesday in Vilnius, Lithuania. Snaidero had won the first game by 3 points, 75-72, so when Jerome Allen launched a three-point attempt with 4 seconds left, it would have put the visitors from Italy ahead in the series. Allen's shot missed, however, so Lietuvos advances to play either Nancy or Strasbourg in the quarterfinals. L. Rytas led by as much as 20-7 early in the second quarter before Snaidero came back to take narrow leads in the second half. To Snaidero's last lead, early in the fourth quarter, L. Rytas reacted with a 7-0 blast and then hung on to watch Allen's miss decide the series. Kareem Rush led the winners with 19 points, while Joao Paulo Batista added 11 and Janis Blums 10. Matt Nielsen had 12 rebounds as L. Rytas ruled on the boards, 46-30. Allen was Snaidero's only double-figure scorer, with 24 points, but he and his teammates made only 11 of 37 three-point attempts.

L. Rytas got on the scoreboard first with a free throw by Arturas Jomantas. The visitors chose to slow the game down but it didn't help as Rush dropped a triple on a fastbreak to make it 4-0. L. Rytas held Snaidero scoreless for more than 4 minutes to start the game, but the hosts couldn't make a shot themselves as the score stayed still. Allen broke the silence with a penetration layup before Marijonas Petravicius answered with a layup. Damon Williams and Jomantas exchanged baskets as Snaidero seemed to have found a rhythm, but Rush drained another one from downtown and boosted L. Rytas in front by 11-4. The margin kept rising as Andrius Slezas rose off the the bench with a triple and Jomantas added a three-point play. Snaidero looked totally confused on the offensive end as they ended the quarter on the wrong side of a 16-7 scoreboard. Batista opened the second quarter with back-to-back layups that made it 20-7 as Snaidero kept turning the ball over. Joel Zacchetti stepped up with a mid-range jumper but Mindaugas Lukauskis matched him as he converted an enormous put-back dunk. Snaidero had tried 13 three-pointers by then, and 4 of them were airballs. Allen finished a fastbreak only to see it answered by Janis Blums' triple for a 26-11 score. Michele Antonutti and Williams initiated a 0-5 run which forced a L. Rytas timeout with the score fixed at 26-16. Snaidero continued to pick up its game now as Kristaps Valters hit a triple and reduced the margin even more, but Matt Nielsen stepped up with 4 points as L. Rytas seemd to regain control at 30-19. That was not completely true, however, because Snaidero ended the first half with a cozy 0-5 run to pull within 30-24 at the break.

Blums was the first to score after the break, but Christian Di Giuliomaria sparked what would be a big Snaidero comeback. When Allen drained a triple, all was to start over again. Snaidero calmed their nerves as Williams drove to score, while Silvio Gigena made a shot from outside and converted a three-point play with the added free throw. That suddenly, it was 32-36 for Snaidero. Rush stepped up for the hosts with a triple as the crowd became the x-factor. Allen calmly hit free throws but Williams missed his. Triples by Slezas and Rush regained the lead for L. Rytas, but Allen looked unstoppable as he answered with 4 consecutive points to take it back for Snaidero, 41-42. However, Nielsen and Rush combined for 3 points to finish the quarter with L. Rytas in front again, 44-42 after 30 minutes. Mike Penberthy dropped a three-pointer to regain the lead early in the decisive final quarter for Snaidero, but Batista stepped up with a huge dunk and a layup to give it back to L. Rytas, 48-45. Blums exploded with a three-pointer, but Di Giuliomaria did the same to make it 51-48. The teams exchanged baskets again as Nielsen hit a midrange jumper and Allen responded with an important triple with a shotclock winding down at 53-51. Batista made free throws to boost the lead again while Nielsen worked hard on defense. He denied a try by Williams and forced his foul. Rush hit a difficult fade-away jumper for a 57-51 lead , but Allen didn't miss from the line. The packed house of 10,000 L. Rytas fans exploded with joy a minute later as Jomantas and Rush finished their plays and boosted the advantage to 61-53 with 2 minutes on the clock. The hosts looked to have seized the victory when Williams was punished with a flagrant foul, but Penberthy drained a triple and Allen added a free throw for a 62-57 score. Rush drove again, but Penberthy responded with another triple at 64-60. When Blums made only 1 of 2 free throws, all was in hands of Allen, who had a chance for the series or a tie, but went for the decisive triple in the last second - and missed.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007
Gintaras Radauskas, Vilnius
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Attendance: 10000
By Quarter1234
Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius16141421
Snaidero Udine7171818
End of Quarter1234
Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius16304465
Snaidero Udine7244260
Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 RUSH, KAREEM LAMAR 36:00 19 3/6 4/9 1/2   5 5   1 3 1   2 2 14
5 SLEZAS, ANDRIUS 21:00 6   2/4     5 5 1 2 1     4   7
7 STELMAHERS, ROBERTS 11:00     0/2     1 1     1         -2
8 LUKAUSKIS, MINDAUGAS 17:30 2 1/2 0/3   2   2 1       1 2   -2
9 DELININKAITIS, TOMAS 2:00                 1 1     1 2 1
10 KOLJEVIC, IVAN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
11 ZUKAUSKAS, EURELIJUS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
13 BATISTA, J.P. 16:45 11 4/7   3/4 2 2 4   1 2     1 4 13
15 PETRAVICIUS, MARIUS 9:00 2 1/1     2 3 5     2     3 2 4
21 JOMANTAS, ARTURAS 24:30 7 3/6   1/3 3 3 6 4   2 1   5 3 9
44 NIELSEN, MATT 33:15 8 4/5 0/1 0/2 2 10 12 3   3 4 1 1 4 22
45 BLUMS, JANIS 29:00 10 1/3 2/3 2/4 1 5 6 2 2 2     2 2 13
Team             2 2   2           4
Totals 200:00 65 17/30 8/22 7/15 12 36 48 11 9 17 6 2 21 19 83
        56.7% 36.4% 46.7%
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
Snaidero Udine
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
6 LOVATTI, FABIO DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
8 GIGENA, SILVIO 19:30 7 2/3 1/2 0/1                   1 5
9 ANTONUTTI, MICHELE 17:30 3 0/2 1/2     1 1   1       2 1 1
15 KASTMILER, SANJIN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
18 VALTERS, KRISTAPS 25:00 4 0/3 1/5 1/2 4 4 8 2 1 2     4 4 5
25 PENBERTHY, MIKE 29:00 9 0/1 3/9     2 2 1   2     3 1 1
30 DI GIULIOMARIA, CHRISTIAN 28:45 5 1/1 1/2     1 1   3 2     4 4 6
41 WILLIAMS, DAMON 32:45 6 3/7 0/4 0/2 5 5 10 2 2 3 1 2 4 2 4
52 ZACCHETTI, JOEL 15:00 2 1/4 0/1   2 2 4   1   1 1 1 2 4
53 ALLEN, JEROME 32:30 24 3/3 4/11 6/8 1 3 4 2 1     3 1 6 24
Team           1 2 3   8           11
Totals 200:00 60 10/24 11/36 7/13 13 20 33 7 17 9 2 6 19 21 61
        41.7% 30.6% 53.8%
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Head Coaches

Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
"What is most important, we won. The final margin was enough to qualify. I knew the game was to be tough as Snaidero has great shooters who control the ball very well. Penberthy, Allen and Valters did their job and it was hard for us to stop them. We couldn't press them hard and steal the ball. The start of the game was good for us. It's a shame we kinda stopped later. We commited three stupid turnovers and they came back with triples. It was really hard after the halftime break but we got the lead. Unfortunately, we couldn't save it heading into the final minute which was really nervous. Altogether, we turned the ball over way too many times. But I believe that when Nielsen, Stelmahers and Rush are one hundred percent fit, we will be stronger. I wasn't really scared when Allen attacked our basket on the final play. It was a crazy shot, but he had just made one minutes earlier. It would have been illogical for him to hit another unbelievable triple. Two years ago rumour went that Allen was not able to play high-level basketball anymore but they were all wrong. He was simply briiliant tonight. He did what he wanted on the court."
Snaidero Udine
"I think we played against a great team. We are out of the cup but I believe we have shown everything we could. Maybe we can play a little better. Many of our guys played in such big arena for the first time in their career. Perhaps that's the reason we were quite bad in the first half. We played much better later. We didn't have two players, Mutombo and Jaacks which our team needs badly. When the margin is tiny, you pay attention to all the small things because every one of them matters. I think Lietuvos rytas really shot better tonight. Last shot by Allen is a part of the game. He decided to shoot and that's what he did."


Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
"It was a hard game. We came out early, played well and got a pretty big lead. But then we started giving up three-point shots. They came out fast in the second half and took a lead for a while, but we got it back and held onto it. We won by five, which was enough. It's great to advance to the next round but we have to play a lot better if we wanna go further. We played great defense in the first half and they weren't able to knock down shots. But we played a shooting team so basically they had to hit some. Which they did and came back in the game. Overall, we played not bad but it must be better."
Snaidero Udine
"I think we gave ourselves an opportunity to win the game. We knew it was going to be tough and we emphasized defense. If one plays defense, one gets opportunities to win. Lietuvos rytas scored 65 points which is good for us. The bad thing is that we only scored 60. I just think that as a team we have to understand how important every possesion is. A good example is the game two weeks ago in Udine. We had 14-point lead there. When you look back, you think about it and understand that if you took advantage of every opportunity out there, you would not be in a situation right here. Lietuvos rytas played hard, they played together and made some tough shots. Nielsen played hard underneath, he rebounded well and that. It took too long for us to get settled in the game. We knew they would come out on us hard and aggresive but we didn't do a good job on defense. We shot 20 threes in the first half but it definitely is not the way our team plays. All in all, they made the defensive stops they needed to and we didn't. They scored when they needed to and we didn't. On the last attack, I wanted to be aggresive when I got the ball. If I had a chance to play that attack again, I would play it a little different. But the game doesn't come down to one possesion, it's a 40-minute battle."
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