Real Madrid rocked Virtus Roma 56-74
Real Madrid registered its first road win in Turkish Airlines Euroleague regular season Group B by downing previously undefeated Virtus Roma 56-74 in the Italian capital on Thursday. Both teams join a four-way tie stop the standings along with Brose Baskets and Olympiacos, each with a 2-1 record. Ante Tomic and Clay Tucker led the winners with 12 points apiece. Sergio Rodriguez added 9, 7 rebounds and 7 assists for Madrid. Nihad Djedovic had 13 points for Roma while Ali Traore added 12 for the guests. Djedovic and Charles Smith allowed Roma to get a 15-11 lead late in the first quarter. It didn't last long, however, as Tucker and Novica Velickovic fueled a 0-15 run that Madrid ahead for good, 17-29. Tucker, Carlos Suarez and Tomic allowed the guests to make it an 18-point game, 21-39, at halftime. Nothing changed after the break, as Madrid boosted its lead to 30-60 late in the third quarter and cruised to an impressing road win.
Roma placed Jacopo Giachetti in its starting lineup to guard Rodriguez. Felipe Reyes got the guests going with free throws, as Roma tried to run its offense through Smith. Djedovic took over with an up-and-under layup that Tomic matched with foul shots. Andrea Crosariol got the crowd involved with a second-chance basket and a jumper by Djedovic gave Roma its first lead, 6-4. Suarez shined with a tip-in and despite entering the foul bonus too early, Roma kept playing with high intensity. Djedovic scored off a steal and Smith buried his trademark step-back triple for a 11-7 lead. D'or Fischer silenced the crowd with a put-back dunk that an unstoppable Djedovic matched with a layup. Suarez tried to change things with a reverse layup but Vladimir Dasic sank a six-meter jumper for a 15-11 score. A fallaway jumper by Tucker brought Madrid within 15-13 after 10 minutes.
Madrid coach Ettore Messina tried a dynamic lineup with Velickovic and Jorge Garbajosa at both forwards early in the second quarter. Tucker sank another jumper and matched Traore's layup with another shot for a 17-17 tie. Free throws by Rodriguez soon put the guests back ahead, 17-19. Roma called timeout but kept struggling to score. Meanwhile, Fischer fed Velickovic for a layup and Tucker added a triple in transition for a 17-24 score. Velickovic followed free throws with a jump hook for a double-digit Madrid lead, 17-28. A foul shot by Garbajosa capped a 0-14 Madrid run, as Roma had been scoreless for 6 minutes until Traore hit free throws. Tucker beat the hosts' zone defense with a three-pointer and Suarez copied him soon after that to break the game open, 19-35. Djedovic and Reyes traded layups and Tomic scored down low for an 18-point Madrid lead, 21-39, at halftime.
Madrid kept following its game plan after the break - strong man-to-man defense and a lot of patience in offense, getting its big men involved. Tomic hit a jump hook and Sergio Llull added a driving layup that boosted the guests' lead to 21-43. Dasic tried to change things with a three-point play but Tomic scored in transition and Reyes added a fast break layup to make Roma stop the game at 24-47. Luca Vitali buried a triple and Crosariol dunked it to get the crowd involved, 30-49. Llull stepped up with a seven-meter bomb, as Madrid kept using long possessions to run the game clock down. Roma switched back to a 2-3 zone defense that Rodriguez punished with a corner tirple that made it a 26-point game, 30-56. Fischer followed a wild dunk with free throws for a 30-60 score. A three-pointer by Josh Heytvelt got Roma within 33-60 after 30 minutes.
The outcome was clear already but Roma tried to fight back to avoid a severe home loss. The hosts could not find the way to the basket, however, as Madrid was all over the place in defense. Dasic and Djedovic, however, struck from downtown to get their team within 39-62. Roma tried to play more aggressive at both ends, running its offense through Djedovic and Crosariol. Traore shined with a power basket that Tomic matched with his trademark jump hook. Roma only managed to trade baskets and by the time Tomic scored again, everything was said and done already. Madrid returned home with a pivotal road win against a direct opponent in the fight to reach the Top 16. Meanwhile, Roma needs to bounce back right away in its upcoming road game against Unicaja.
Thursday, November 4, 2010