Club profile: PGE Turow

Jul 01, 2014 by Print
PGE Turow Champion Polish League 2013-14 (Photo - Sebastian Rzepiel)
PGE Turow ZgorzelecAfter many years chasing it, PGE Turow Zgorzelec finally lifted the Polish League title last season and accordingly earned a ticket into the 2014-15 Turkish Airlines Euroleague. Turow has not played in European competition in either of the past two seasons, but made up for that by being more competitive in its domestic competition. The club was the Polish League regular season winner and swept AZS Koszalin and Rosa Radom before dethroning Stelmet Zielona Gora in the finals. Coach Miodrag Rajkovic and star players J.P. Prince, Filip Dylewicz and Damian Kulig made it all possible. Turow also reached the Polish Cup final, but Slask Wroclaw ended up lifting the trophy. Turow may be a Euroleague newcomer, but it is also a club with great tradition that has put Zgorzelec – population 32,000 – on the European basketball map. Founded in 1948, the club opened its basketball section in 1965 and won back-to-back Polish League titles in 1977 and 1978. However Turow later faded into obscurity for many years, and played in the Polish second and third divisions. The team won the Polish second division regular season title in 2003 and was offered a wild card to the top league, but the club turned it down, preferring instead to gain promotion to the first division by earning it on court, which happened the following year. Turow shined in its Polish League return in 2004-05 by finishing fourth at the end of the regular season and losing against eventual champ Prokom Trefl Sopot in the semifinals. Turow took a step forward in 2006-07 by signing head coach Saso Filipovski and Andres Rodriguez, Dragisa Drobnjak, Thomas Kelati and Lance Williams. Turow ranked second at the end of the regular season and made it to the finals, but once again Prokom stood in Turow's way. In the summer of 2007, Filipovski added David Logan to the mix and found success on all fronts, winning seven straight ULEB Cup games at one point en route to the Final Eight before bowing out to Dynamo Moscow in the quarterfinals. It was also Turow's debut season in European competitions. Back home, Turow finished the regular season atop the standings, but lost its quest for the Polish championship in a seven-game finals series against nemesis Prokom. The club returned to the Polish League finals again in 2009 and 2011, but Prokom always had Turow’s number. In 2011 the drama was greater than ever after Torey Thomas pushed Turow to a 3-2 series lead with Game 6 at home, but Prokom rallied to keep the title. Turow played the Eurocup again in 2009, 2010 and 2012, but never advanced past the regular season, accumulating an underwhelming 5-13 record in those three seasons. After losing its fifth consecutive Polish League finals series in 2013, the long-awaited championship came – and now Turow hopes to carry this momentum into the Euroleague, which is – without any doubt – the club's greatest challenge to this date.
Polish League: Champion
Polish Cup: Finalist