The Artland Dragons advanced to the Last 16 round despite losing 82-80 at Triumph Lyubertsy on Tuesday night. The ULEB Cup debutants moved on thanks to an 81-75 victory in the first leg last week in Germany. In the Last 16, Artland will face the winners between the series pitting Turk Teleokm Ankara against Unics Kazan with the first leg scheduled for March 11. After 30 close minutes in which the Dragons always had the edge, Triumph burst to a 68-61 early in the last period. However the Dragons answered with a 2-9 run to tie the score at 70-70, and from that point the teams exchanged slim leads. Kristaps Valters gave an 82-77 cushion and hope to the hosts with seconds to go, but Artland scored three of his four attempts from the foul line to seal their qualification. The hero was Adam Chubb, who finished 30 points on 11-of-16 two-point shooting and 8 rebounds. Leon Rodgers added 16 points and Chad Prewitt 10. Ognjen Askrabic and Fedro Dmitriev drilled 14 points apiece for Triumph Lyubertsy, Valters had 13 with 6 assists, Terrel Lyday 13 and Mire Chatman 12.
Andrey Komarovskiy hit from downtown to give an early 5-2 margin to the hosts, but Artland answered with a 0-9 run capped by Rodgers from mid range to go up 6. Komarovskiy nailed another three-pointer only to see Chubb from the foul line gave a 13-19 cushion to Artland. Prewitt and Darius Hall kept the visitors up 18-24 before Valters from downtown fixed the score at 21-24 at the end of the first quarter. Igor Zamanskiy and Lyday pushed Triumph in front early in the second quarter, but Rodgers scored 6 in a row and Hall capped a 0-8 run to give to Artland a slim 28-32 cushion. Fedor Dmitriev from beyond the arc fueled the hopes of Triumph and Chatman from the foul line put the hosts up 37-36. A three-point-play converted by Chubb gave Artland a 37-39 margin at halftime.
The Dragons maintained a slim cushion back from the lockers with Prewitt scoring from mid range for a 41-45 advantage. Lyday sounded the charge scoring from long distance, but Chubb converted another three-point-play. Valters tied it at 48-48 from the line, then Rodgers and Dmitriev exchanged three pointers and Goldsberry and Lyday made it 53-53. Valters remained hot from downtown, giving a 56-53 advantage to Triumph, but Artland did not give up, taking again the lead with Hall at 56-57 before Lyday assisted from Valters made it 59-57 at the end of the third quarter. Rodgers tied the score opening the last quarter, but Chatman from downtown soon gave to Triumph a 7-point margin – enough to qualify. Lamont McIntosh responded by capping a 2-9 partial to tie the score at 70-70 with four minutes left in the match. Prewitt put in front again the guests 72-73, Chubb extended from the foul line to 72-75. Triumph tied with a basket and additional free throw by Ognjen Askrabic. He gave a 79-77 advantage to the hosts entering in the last minute and when Goldsberry committed an unsportmanlike foul, Valters missed one of his free throws, but nailed a mid-range jumper to get to 82-77. Prewitt did not score his attempt from beyond the arc and Valters had a chance to get his team back to +7, but he missed and then Prewitt was perfect from the free throw line to go on 82-80 and seal an historical qualification for the Dragons.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008