Spartak St. Petersburg routed KK Buducnost Voli 70-64 to clinch a ticket to the Eurocup Quarterfinals and first place in Group K. With the victory, Spartak remains the only undefeated team in the competition. Despite the loss, which dropped Buducnost to 2-3, the Montenegrin powerhouse remains alive to reach the quarterfinals and will face Krka Novo Mesto at home next week. Patrick Beverly paced Spartak with 19 points, Miha Zupan added 15 and 8 rebounds and Loukas Mavrokefalides netted 14. Bojan Krstovic drilled 11 and Hasan Rizvic 10 for Buducnost. A 0-12 run late in the third quarter gave a 43-50 margin to Buducnost, which it maintained till the midway point of the last quarter when a 9-2 spurt for Spartak put the hosts in front 64-60 and it held that slim margin till the final buzzer.
Big man Bojan Dubljevic scored form three-point land to open the scoring before Vladimir Dragicevic and Krstovic exchanged two pointers. Then tripled by Beverley and Aleksa Popovic fixed the score at 6-8 for the guests. Mavrokefalides from the top of the key and Beverley from the foul line gave a 11-8 margin to Spartak. Rizvic in the paint and Krstovic from downtown gave another advantage, 11-13, to Buducnost. Mavrokefalides and Rizvic scored both underneath to make it 14-15. Free throws by Nikola Ivanovic and Milan Milosevic gave the guests a 16-21 margin; Janis Strelnieks hit a mid-range jumper, but Matthew Bouldin made it 18-24 from beyond the arc, before Mavrokefalides scored a free throw for the final 19-24 after 10 minutes. Zupan scored from downtown on the first play of the second quarter and then he answered an Ivanovic layup. Cedomir Vikovac scored in the open court to make it 24-28. Dubjevic extended the difference to 24-30, but Spartak reacted with a 5 points. Jermaine Anderson found easy points on the fastbreak for the 29-32. Beverley and a three-pointer by Vasily Zavourev made it 34-32 for the hosts. Dubljevic tied the score in the paint. Anderson scored free throws and Zupan scored from mid-range for a 36-36 halftime score.
Beverley ended two minutes scoreless with a triple to start the third quarter scoring. Zupan added a two pointer before Vitkovac from the foul line bagged the first two points of Buducnost in the half. Valery Likhodey kept the hosts in charge, but the visitors sparked a 12-0 run, capped by a three-point-play by Rizvic to be again on top 43-50. Zupan scored 5 in a row to get to 49-52, but with seconds remaining in the third quarter, an Ivanovic layup made it 49-54. Dragicevic sounded the charge for Spartak early in the last quarter, but a Krstovic rocket from long distance kept Buducnost ahead 51-57. Zozulin also hit a triple for the home team. The defenses prevailed for the next two minutes, then Rizvic scored just one his free throws for 54-58 score. Zozulin remained hot and drained another three pointer to get within 1 before Vitkovac from the corner scored to stay on 57-60 through midway the quarter. Mavrokefalides and Victor Keyru fueled Spartak to climb in front on 64-60. Vitkovac hit free throws that kept alive Buducnost, however Beverley converted his attempts, as did Marko Popovic to be 66-64 with 1:52 remaining in the game. Mavrokefalides’s mid-range jumper made it a four-point game with just a minute left and Beverley fixed the final 70-64 from the foul line to leave his side unbeaten this season.
Tuesday, February 21, 2012