Joventut rolls past Metropolitans
Joventut Badalona bounced back in fine fashion in rolling past Boulogne Metropolitans 92 with an 86-63 victory at home in Group A. Joventut took control of the game with an 18-3 run spanning the second and third quarters in improving its record to 5-2. Pau Ribas paced four Joventut scorers in double figures with 17 points, while Vladimir Brodziansky scored 13 points, Brandon Paul had 11, Joel Parra chipped in 10 and Ante Tomic tallied 8 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists in fewer than 18 minutes. Vince Hunter was Metropolitans’ leading scorer with 19 points, Will Cummings added 17 points and Miralem Halilovic scored 10. But that was not enough as the French side dropped its second straight game to fall to 3-4.
Halilovic hit a layup to start the game for the visitors and then the Cummings show started. He scored his first 4 points while Tomic scored 6 and Joventut was up 8-6. Ribas drained 2 three-pointers to give the hosts a 16-12 lead. Cummings answered with a three-point play to give him 11 points and 4 straight points from Hunter knotted the game at 19-19. Joventut finished the quarter strong though with Brodziansky scoring twice for a 25-20 advantage after 10 minutes.
Paul drained a three-pointer to start the second quarter for Joventut and Brodziansky’s hook shot pushed the advantage to double figures for the first time at 32-22. After Andres Feliz extended the gap to 12, Hunter responded with 4 straight points at the other end. But the Joventut express continued with a Ribas three-pointer and 4 Parra points in a 13-3 finish to the first half and a 49-31 cushion at the break.
Paul started the second half with a triple and the lead grew to 54-31. Metropolitans began to finally score a bit more consistently with Keith Hornsby and Hunter combining for 10 points to pull within 60-45. But Joventut was still able to score and Brodziansky had 4 points as the lead reached 68-49 after 30 minutes.
Metropolitans tried to work hard on defense to start the fourth quarter with Halilovic slightly cutting the gap to 72-55. Joventut just kept rolling though, thanks also to three-pointers from Brodziansky, Pep Busquets and Derek Willis as the lead got to 83-57 with under 4 minutes to play. And the visitors did not get closer than 23 points the rest of the way.
Ribas uses his minutes wisely
Joventut pulling away in the second quarter gave the home side the advantage of limiting its players’ minutes. Carles Duran only had three players stay on the court longer than 20 minutes. One of those who did not play 20 minutes was Pau Ribas as the veteran collected 17 points on 7-of-9 shooting in 19:05 minutes. He also grabbed 2 rebounds and dished out 6 assists for an index rating of 21. The 17 points was a season-high for Ribas and his 6 assists ranked second for the season.
Bounce back for Cummings
Despite the loss, Metropolitans fans can be happy about Will Cummings bouncing back from his subpar showing in Round 6. The guard scored 13 points against Partizan NIS Belgrade on 4-of-16 shooting and turned the ball over 5 times for an index rating of 0. Against Joventut, Cummings scored 11 points in the first quarter and even though he only had 6 points the rest of the way, he produced in other areas. Cummings collected 8 rebounds and dished out 4 assists while also drawing 9 fouls for a PIR of 24.
No outside shooting for Metropolitans
Boulogne Metropolitans 92 got down by double figures already in the second quarter and the team just could not come back because it was lacking one of the top weapons - the three-pointers. Coach Vincent Collet’s team connected on just 2 of 16 shots from long range (12.5%). Vince Hunter made his only attempt - one round after he made his first three-pointer of the season. Keith Hornsby meanwhile had been heating up, hitting at least 2 three-pointers in the last three games, but he made just 1 of -5 from long range against Joventut.
Tuesday, December 14, 2021