Joventut pulls away to home win
Joventut Badalona picked up its first victory of the 7DAYS EuroCup season by defeating Germani Brescia Leonessa 81-68 at home in Group C. The 2008 champion, which had not won a game in the EuroCup since early 2010, was paced by Klemen Prepelic with 24 points. Nikos Zisis collected 13 points, 4 rebounds and 5 assists, Alen Omic chipped in 12 points, 9 rebounds and 3 assists, while Luke Harangody had 11 points. The win improved Joventut's mark to 1-1. Awudu Abass scored 15 points and Luca Vitali 13 for Brescia, which dropped to 1-1.
Zisis opened the scoring and soon piled up 7 points and an assist as Joventut went ahead 9-3. Brescia was stuck on a basket and free throw by Tyler Cain through more than 6 minutes. David Moss broke that drought, and though Prepelic pushed the hosts ahead 13-5, Brescia would pull within 17-14 on Vitali's triple, the last points of the first quarter. Brescia finally took its first lead at 21-22 on a Kenneth Horton basket. That was the first of six straight lead changes, with Joventut getting two scores from Omic. Albert Ventura and Harangody both hit three-pointers to put the hosts up 31-26. Brescia responded with a 2-10 run that included 5 different scorers to lead 35-36 at the intermission. Joventut tallied the first 4 points of the second half to move ahead although Abass tied 41-41 from downtown. Prepelic began to take over with 2 three-point plays and Conor Morgan had 6 points in a 17-2 run as Joventut raced ahead 58-43. But the hosts failed to score in the final 2 minutes of the third quarter while Abass answered with 5 points and fed Vitali for a three-ball at the buzzer to make it 58-53 after 30 minutes. Prepelic stopped the rut and his three-pointer pushed Joventut up 66-55. Brescia would not go away, with DeAndre Lansdowne and Abass both converting three-point plays to make it 68-63. Prepelic stepped up again with a three-pointer and 2 assists to Omic for a 75-63 advantage with under 4 minutes left. Harangody added 2 baskets, by which time the game was decided.
EuroCup returns to Badalona
The historic Palau Olimpic de Badalona, where the Dream Team won a gold medal in 1992, saw the club's first EuroCup home game in nearly a decade as Joventut is competing in the competition for the first time since the 2009-10 season.
Klemen Prepelic was Mr. Do-it-all for Joventut, with 24 points -- though he struggled in hitting just 2 of 11 three-pointers -- while also collecting 5 assists, 4 rebounds and 12 fouls drawn for a PIR of 25.
Joventut connected on 65.7 percent of its two-point shots while holding Brescia to 4-of-22, or 18.2 percent, from long range, as well as forcing 18 turnovers.
Joventut will remain at home and face Darussafaka Tekfen Istanbul on Wednesday, October 16 while Brescia returns home and will take on Cedevita Olimpija Ljubljana the same night.
Tuesday, October 8, 2019