Montepaschi Siena completed an outstanding season by beating Real Madrid 62-80
Montepaschi Siena completed an outstanding Turkish Airlines Euroleague season by beating Real Madrid 62-80 on Sunday in the Third-Place Game at the 2011 Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four at Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona, Spain. Ksistof Lavrinovic scored 17 points to pace the Italian champs in a game they controlled from start to finish. An early 0-10 lead put Siena in the drivers’ seat and although Madrid never quit, riding a standout showing from Sergio Llull, Montepaschi never faltered. David Moss added 11 points, Bo McCalebb scored 10 and Milovan Rakovic posted 8 points and 11 rebounds for the victors. Llull scored 23 and Felipe Reyes and Ante Tomic added 8 points apiece for Madrid.
Both teams tried to set up an inside presence early, with Tomic and Rakovic going head-to-head, but neither big man was particularly effective at the start and Siena got its first two baskets on penetration layups by Marko Jaric and Malik Hairston. baseline jumper from Moss stretched the run to 2-6, as Madrid committed 3 early turnovers and head coach Emanuele Molin burned a timeout. Siena kept the defensive screws tight on the Whites’ halfcourt offensive sets and upped the transition game, with Rakovic finally getting on the scoreboard with a close-ranger and Lavrinovic extending the difference to 2-12. With D’Or Fischer in the game, Madrid gained some muscle inside and the big man scored on a put-back and Llull followed with a drive to the basket. With improved ball movement on offense and Nikola Mirotic joining forces with Fischer in the paint, Madrid was able to close the quarter with some momentum as Llull drained a triple and the 10-minute mark came with a reduced 11-19 advantage for Siena.
Tomic further narrowed the gap early in the second quarter, but McCalebb used his speed to race downcourt for a layup. Llull got 2 points back for Madrid from the line. Kaukenas added a jumper to keep Siena firmly ahead. Rakovic worked inside with a nice spin move to pump the lead back to double figures. Tomic showed tough with a floater only to see a Nikos Zisis triple make it 17-28 midway through the quarter. Mirotic raced donwcourt for a quick counter layup, but Siena remained fully in control. Reyes from the free throw line and Tomic thanks to a great dish from Reyes carried Madrid back within 5. A Siena timeout didn’t change much as Carlos Suarez added a free throw to the Madrid run before Moss finally responded with a bank shot. Zisis added foul shots. A fresh Mirza Begic came in for his first points of the weekend and Mirotic tacked on free throws to make it 28-32. Andrea Michelori and Llull traded baskets. Then Lavrinovic muscled his way inside for a score only to see Begic connect on a short jumper that made it 32-36 at halftime.
After Suarez missed an open three that would have narrowed the gap to a single point, Rakovic barreled through the Madrid defense for a basket-plus-foul. Llull came through from downtown and on the next possession got to the line to get Madrid to 37-40. Moss started heating up for Siena and drained a triple after which Lavrinovic scored to give Siena space. Fischer connected on a jumper but after Kaukenas responded, Moss finished in the paint and drew a foul, allowing him to lift Siena to 39-49. McCalebb padded the lead with a pair of layups in transition, forcing Madrid to use a timeout before the game slipped away. Llull came to the rescue with a three-pointer and then a penetration for a three-point play. Lavrinovic though had 4 free throws in the final minute of the quarter to keep Siena in control at 45-57.
Novica Velickovic came on for his first appearance of the Final Four and sank a pair of free throws. Reyes kept trying his best for the Whites, who closed to 53-61 on a basket in the low post by Tomic. Marco Carraretto fired back with a long jumper and a Rakovic steal led to a Zisis layup that put Siena firmly in control at 53-68. Another basket by Llull was not enough as an unsportsmanlike foul by Reyes for grabbing Lavrinovic from behind led to 2 successful free throws. Madrid kept at it with Llull getting a point at the line and Pablo Prigioni feeding Velickovic for a score, but time was running out. Lavrinovic free throws followed at the other end by Tomas Ress rising to reject Velickovic at the rim practically sealed the outcome with just under two minutes remaining. An unsportsmanlike foul committed by Llull erased any doubt as Kaukenas converted free throws and Zisis a jumper to wrap up the victory and a third-place finish to an outstanding Turkish Airlines Euroleague season for Montepaschi Siena.
Sunday, May 8, 2011
Frankie Sachs, Euroleague.net, Barcelona