BCM Gravelines-Dunkerque vaulted headlong into the Last 16 from Group A with another impressive offensive display as it halted visiting Hapoel Jerusalem 97-74 at home in France on Tuesday in a game that was not close after the first 3 minutes. Gravelines raised its record to 4-0, its best start ever in European competition, and its Eurocup-best scoring average to 91.8 points. Former competition champ Hapoel dropped to 1-3 and must beat BC Donetsk next week at home to avoid elimination. Gravelines blasted off to a 27-13 lead after one quarter and never looked back on the way to victory Tuesday. Rudy Jomby scored all 23 of his points in the game's first 27 minutes to lead Gravelines. He assisted on back-to-back three-pointers and downed another shortly after halftime that boosted the difference above 20 points for the first time. Juby Johnson, Cyril Akpomedah added 10 points each, the same as Andrew Albicy, who also dished 10 assists, while John Edwards scored 12 for the winners. Elishay Kadir scored 14, Brian Randle 11, Luke Jackson and D. J. Strawberry 10 each for Hapoel.
The Israeli visitors jumped up 0-4 before Ludovic Vaty tied on a dunk that his Gravelines teammates heard like a starter's pistol. They sprinted ahead 14-6 behind triples from Jomby and Yannick Bokolo. Kadir calmed the visitors with free throws and a layup at 16-11, but Gravelines was merely catching its breath. Johnson joined the scoring from downtown to end a 7-0 run and Jomby's quarter-ending layup had the hosts in full control, 27-13, after 10 minutes. Hapoel tried to hit back with baskets by Randle, Strawberry and Yuval Naimy to make it 32-21. Subsequent points by Thomas kept the visitors within 37-25, but that's when the good times resumed rolling for Gravelines fans. Valentin Bigote, Vaty and Albicy were the catalysts as the hosts' lead surged to 43-26, then Jomby returned to score 5 unanswered points in a row. Even when Dan Grunfield and Naimy matched him, however, Akpomedah blasted a triple to make it 51-33, the third time in four games this seasons that Gravelines hit the half-century mark by halftime.
Jomby, Akpomedah and Johnson (twice) struck from downtown - boom, boom, boom, boom - to start the third quarter with Gravelines seizing a 24-point lead, 63-39. Hapoel got 7 points back through Strawberry and Luke Jackson, but it wasn't long before Jomby was back with his team's 10th three-pointer - as compared to just 2 until then by Hapoel - to restore a 71-48 lead. It was all that Hapoel could do, with its third triple off the hand of Jackson, to trim the difference to 20 points again, 75-55, after 30 minutes. Gravelines was content to trade points in the fourth quarter, and even so 6 free throws in a row by Albicy supplied the game's biggest margin, 86-59 with 6:33 to play. After that, Hapoel could only hope to keep it from looking worse, which the visitors did while the home fans celebrated Gravelines reaching the Last 16 early and undefeated.
Tuesday, December 6, 2011