Kalnietis three-pointer wins it late for Lokomotiv
Mantas Kalnietis hit a three-pointer with 4 seconds to go as Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar pulled out a thrilling 62-63 road win over Galatasaray Liv Hospital Istanbul in Game of the Week on Thursday night. It is the third game in its Turkish Airlines Euroleague debut season that Lokomotiv wins on a late three-pointer. This one was for its first ever Top 16 win, improving the team to 1-2 in the fifth place of Group F, while Galatasaray dropped to 0-3. The hosts led most of the way, but never more than 20-12 at the end of the first quarter. Galatasaray seemed to pull away on several occasions throughout the game, but Lokomotiv came back every time. The hosts had 62-58 with a little under three minutes to go, but did not score again, while Kalnietis scored 11 of his 13 points in the second half, including the game-winning three – his only shot from downtown on the night – for Lokomotiv’s historic win. Derrick Brown had 16 points and 5 steals in victory, while Aleks Maric, Sergey Bykov and Marcus Williams scored 8 points apiece. Carlos Arroyo had 19 points and 6 assists for the hosts, Pops Mensah-Bonsu collected 10 points and 7 rebounds, while Malik Hairston chipped in with 9 points in defeat.
First quarter: Galatasaray takes control early with 16-4 spurt
Brown opened the scoring with a alley-oop dunk, and Richard Hendrix drove the baseline for a one-handed slam. On the other end, Zoran Erceg scored a driving layup and Carlos Arroyo nailed a jumper to tie it at 4-4. Brown threw down another dunk, but Hairston scored inside and Erceg converted a fastbreak layup, before Arroyo connected with Mensah-Bonsu for an alley-oop dunk and the hosts' first lead, 10-8. Kalnietis and Cenk Akyol traded buckets before Kruno Simon tied it at 12-12. Galatasaray finished the quarter strong: Arroyo scored a driving floater, and great ball movement from the hosts set up Hairston wide open for the first three-pointer of the game, helping them to a 20-12 lead at the end of the opening quarter.
Second quarter: Lokomotiv makes a quick comeback
Bykov opened the second quarter with a driving layup, before Williams and Valeriy Likhodey nailed a triple apiece, tying the game. Lokmotiv went back into the lead with a great assist from Bykov for an uncontested Maric layup, 20-22. A Furkan Aldemir put-back snapped a 0-10 run and the hosts' drought of almost four minutes without a single basket. Williams scored a fastbreak layup, but Arroyo found Milan Macvan for a reverse layup to tie the score, 24-24, midway through the quarter. Galatasaray regained the lead with Aldemir's put-back and Arroyo's triple, but Brown answered with a basket from close range. Bykov's long jumper made it 29-30. Still, it was Galatasaray who went into halftime with a 35-32 lead after Mensah-Bonsu scored inside and Arroyo knocked down a mid-range jumper.
Third quarter: the drama builds
Erceg opened the third quarter with a jumper, but Bykov and Maric made steals and converted them into fastbreak buckets for a 37-38 lead. After a timeout by Galatasaray head coach Ergin Ataman, Arroyo buried a three-pointer, but Brown hit a jumper for the visitors. Mensah-Bonsu scored a layup, but Kalnietis converted a perfectly executed fast break for another tie, 42-42. Arroyo kept the hosts in front with another jumper, and after Maric and Mensah-Bonsu traded baskets inside, Hairston hit a baseline mid-range shot, then grabbed his own miss and slammed it home for a 51-44 lead. After a Lokomotiv timeout, Williams nailed a three, before Kalnietis hit for two, and finished the quarter with a fastbreak dunk that evened the score, 51-51.
Fourth quarter: Lokomotiv hangs in before Kalnietis wins it
Henry Domercant got a lucky roll on a three-pointer, and Macvan followed it with a shot from downtown, his first of the season, to make it 57-51. The visitors hustled, grabbing 3 consecutive offensive rebounds, and stole three balls on defense. A pair of Brown’s fastbreak dunks cut it to 57-56, but Arroyo drove for a layup, ending the hosts’ span of more than three minutes without a basket. Lokomotiv stayed within 1 point with another fastbreak layup from Kalnietis, but Arroyo drove for a layup-plus-free throw and a 62-58 cushion. However, that proved to be the last basket of the game for the hosts. Hendrix made a pair of free throws, to enter the final minute down by 2, and Kalnietis hit an off-the dribble three-pointer over Mensah-Bonsu with exactly 4.0 seconds to go for 62-63. The hosts had the final possession and the ball went to Arroyo who missed a tough mid-range jumper, as Lokomotiv celebrated another dramatic victory.
Thursday, January 16, 2014