Cedevita sinks ALBA, which backed into Top 16
Cedevita Zagreb picked up its second road win of the season, holding off a depleted ALBA Berlin 102-109 on Wednesday night in the German capital. ALBA dropped to 5-2 in Group B, but still qualified to the Top 16 thanks to other results. Cedevita completed the season sweep of ALBA to improve to 4-3 record and third place. The visitors built a 27-point lead in the first half, before ALBA ran out of time to rally all the way back in the fourth quarter. Justin Cobbs had 20 points and 9 assists to lead Cedevita, while Jonas Mattisseck and Rokas Giedraitis scored 16 apiece for the hosts, who were missing injured guards Martin Hermannsson and Peyton Siva.
Cedevita took control from the start behind two triples from Vitor Benite. Niels Giffey cut it to 8-12, but Cedevita did not allow another field goal for more than five minutes to finish the first quarter. Meanwhile, Domagoj Bosnjak hit back-to-back shots from downtown to open a 9-20 lead, before Marko Banic and James Bell fueled a 0-12 run to finish the opening quarter up 11-32. Bell hit a three and Jacob Pullen scored twice to open a 13-39 advantage early in the second quarter. Giedraitis and Stefan Peno hit the first two long-range daggers for the hosts, but Toni Katic and Justin Cobbs kept Cedevita rolling at 21-48. Fritz Wagner and Clint Chapman helped the hosts cut into the deficit, but Benite and Bell connected from downtown as the visitors took 38-61 into halftime. ALBA started cutting into the deficit some more in the third, with Peno and Luke Sikma both scoring twice from close range. The teams went to the free throw line often and a layup from Giedraitis and a put-back from Chapman helped made it 58-73, but Cobbs scored twice and the visitors took a 63-79 advantage into the fourth quarter. Pullen and Sikma traded threes before a three-point play by Katic made it 72-90. However, Mattisseck hit a pair of triples to continue ALBA’s charge, and Dennis Clifford scored inside to get it into single digits, 88-97. Giedraitis and Clifford cut it to 93-99 in the penultimate minute, but Pullen and Cobbs scored on the other end to preserve Cedevita's win.
At 5-2, ALBA qualified for the Top 16 on Wednesday night when Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar won at Limoges CSP. ALBA's only losses this season have come against Cedevita, and it also helped the Berliners that Tofas Bursa beat Arka Gdynia a day earlier, since ALBA holds a sweep over Tofas.
Movers and shakers
Apart from top scorer Justin Cobbs, Cedevita had three more players in double figures: Jacob Pullen scored 18 points, Vitor Benite netted 17 points in 17 minutes on 5-of-7 shooting from long range and James Bell collected 14 points and 7 rebounds. For ALBA, Stefan Peno shined with 12 points and 12 assists and Luke Sikma had 11 points and 10 rebounds. Also in double figures in scoring were Niels Giffey with 15 and Clint Chapman with 12 points.
First half domination
Cedevita set a club record for first half points, having held a 38-61 lead at halftime. It was also 6 points shy of a EuroCup record. Cedevita dominated the first half, making 10 of 16 two-pointers and shooting 9 for 13 from three-point range. The visitors held a 20-10 rebounding advantage and dished 17 assists in the opening 20 minutes.
This is only the second time in the competition Cedevita has scored more than 100 points and the first time it has done so in regulation time. Cedevita came 5 points shy of its club record of 114 points it set in an overtime win over Gran Canaria at home in February 2011.
Both teams will play at home next week in Round 8 and both will try to sweep their respective opponents on Wednesday. Cedevita will welcome last-place Arka Gdynia and ALBA will host Limoges CSP.
Wednesday, November 14, 2018