2007-08SemifinalsGame 1
April 12, 2008 CET: 21:00
Local time: 21:00 PALAVELA
Arriel McDonald celebrates - Akasvayu Girona - Final Eight Turin 2008 - EC07

Akasvayu Girona made it to the ULEB Cup final!

Akasvayu advanced to the title game by upsetting Dynamo Moscow 78-81 in the second semifinal at Palavela in Turin, Italy on Saturday night. Akasvayu will now fight for the ULEB Cup title in the all-Spanish final against DKV Joventut. Moreover, the ULEB CUp winner will automatically make it to the 2008-09 Euroleague. Meanwhile, Dynamo will face Galatasaray Cafe Crown in the third place game and the winner will automatically return to the ULEB Cup next season. Arriel McDonald became the game hero with 4-for-4 free throws in the final seconds to hold off a wild Dynamo rally. Ivan Radenovic led the winners with 20 points in his first-ever ULEB Cup start. McDonald added 18 while Marc Gasol had 16 for Akasvayu. Henry Domercant had 20 points for Dynamo, Travis Hansen added 14, Antonis Fotsis got 12 while Robertas Javtokas contributed 10 for the 2006 ULEB Cup winners, that got its last lead at 24-23 on a driving layup by Milos Vujanic. Gasol, an outstanding McDonald and second-chance options helped Akasvayu to regain a 35-38 edge at halftime. Gasol simply took over after the break while Radenovic led a game-breaking 3-17 run that Fernando San Emeterio capped with a corner triple to make it a 19-point game, 45-64, late in the third quarter. Dynamo was not done, however, as it managed to get Domercant and Fotsis involved to get back in the game, 73-74, already in the final 2 minutes. Radenovic and McDonald allowed Akasvayu to keep a 78-81 lead with 9.2 seconds to go. Vujanic and Domercant missed from downtown in the game's final possession.

Akasvayu coach Pedro Martinez opted to use Radenovic to go against Antonis Fotsis at the power forward spot. Domercant got Dynamo going with a jumper while Javtokas and Fotsis had consecutive blocks on Gasol. McDonald was first to score for Akasvayu while a layup by Radenovic gave his team a 2-4 lead. Hansen sank a three-pointer from the left wing but Cvetkovic had a big block on Vujanic that allowed McDonald to answer from downtown and soon added a fast break layup for a 5-9 lead. Javtokas dunked it but Gasol answered with a move in the paint. A power layup by Javtokas and a fast break layup by Domercant off another block by Fotsis tied it at 11-11. Cvetkovic nailed a triple from the top of the key but Gasol picked up his second foul and went to the bench after 6 minutes. Fotsis stepped up again with a put-back layup while Radenovic and Hansen traded basket for a 15-16 score. San Emeterio made foul shots while Roman Montañez copied him off a Dynamo timeout. Sergey Bykov buried a three-pointer while Dmitry Domani scored around the basket for a 20-19 Dynamo edge. Radenovic dunked it and San Emeterio added more free throws to restore a 20-23 Akasvayu edge after 10 minutes.

Sergey Monya, now playing power forward instead of Fotsis, scored off a steal right at the start of the second quarter, as the game turned into a physical battle. Akasvayu, just as usual, ran its offense through Gasol with much success now. Both teams went scoreless for more than 3 minutes until Vujanic stepped up with a driving basket. McDonald took over with a step-back triple, good for a 24-26 Akasvayu lead. Hansen answered with a long two-pointer, as Akasvayu dominated the offensive boards. McDonald dived to grab a loose ball that allowed him to nail a three-pointer that sent the entire Akasvayu bench to their feet. Monya made free throws but San Emeterio matched it in another two-chance Akasvayu possession and Radenovic added a layup to keep his team ahead, 29-33. Domercant sank foul shots that Gasol erased with a turnaround jumper. Hansen shined with a layup coming off the baseline, making Akasvayu call timeout at 33-35. Radenovic fired in one from downtown while Petr Samoylenko answered with an uncontested layup to bring Dynamo within 35-38 at the break. Akavasyu grabbed as many as 8 offensive rebounds in the second quarter in which was the biggest key to its halftime lead.

Fotsis sank a triple to tie the game in the opening play of the third quarter but Gasol answered with a reverse layup and McDonald added one from downtown for a five-point Akasvayu lead, 38-43. Gasol kept pacing Girona with a power basket but Fotsis found space for an uncontested dunk. Domercant was off-target and Hansen was sitting on the bench with 4 fouls, so Dynamo needed to try something else in offense. Gasol - who else? - scored around the basket that Domercant matched with a driving layup. Victor Sada scored in penetration while an unstoppable Gasol added a layup-plus-foul for a double-digit Akasvayu margin, 42-49. Dynamo kept struggling to score and switched to 2-3 zone defense that Cvetkovic punished with a bomb from downtown. Radenovic added a free throw that capped a 0-9 Akasvayu run. Monya and Bykov stepped up with free throws, as Gasol picked up his fourth foul. Radenovic shined with a fallaway jumper and soon added a free throw for a 14-point Akasvayu lead, 45-59. Erik Daniels scored around the basket while San Emeterio stroke from downtown to break the game open, 45-64. Fotsis, Javtokas and Bykov made free throws to bring Dynamo within 49-64 after three quarters.

Vujanic scored in penetration right at the start of the fourth quarter while Hansen sank jumper to give Dynamo some hope at 53-64, after a 8-0 run. Radenovic sank another triple from the top of the key but Monya answered from downtown for a 56-67 deficit with under 8 minutes remaining. Daniels sank a close jumper but Javtokas followed a layup with a dunk while Hansen added a free throw to bring his team back to life, 61-69. Daniels took over with a power layup that Gasol followed with a foul shot. Domercant nailed a six-meter jumper and Javtokas made another free throw to get Dynamo within 64-72. Gasol shined with a smooth move in the low post but Domercant answered from downtown to make it a seven-point game, 67-74, with 4 minutes to go. Fotsis buried a seven-meter bomb to get Dynamo even closer, 70-74. Akasvayu committed yet another turnover while Domercant fired in an unbelievable triple for a 73-74 score with 1:25 remaining. Radenovic scored in penetration with 1:07 to go while Hansen travelled in Dynamo's next possession. He collected a steal and drew a Radenovic's fifth foul, making both shots for a 75-76 Dynamo deficit with 45 seconds remaining. Sada was next in the foul line but made just his first attempt, 75-77. He collected a steal, however, while Dynamo fouled on McDonald. He did not miss but Domercant sank yet another incredible triple for a 78-79 score with 10.8 ticks remaining. McDonald immediately returned to the line to sink both but Vujaniv and Domercant missed respective three-point shots in the game's final possession.

Marc Gasol - Akasvayu Girona - Final Eight Turin 2008 - EC07
Saturday, April 12, 2008
Javier Gancedo, Turin, Italy
No results found.
Attendance: 5060
By Quarter1234
Dynamo Moscow20151429
Akasvayu Girona23152617
End of Quarter1234
Dynamo Moscow20354978
Akasvayu Girona23386481
Dynamo Moscow
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
6 HANSEN, TRAVIS 25:48 14 4/5 1/7 3/4       1 2 1     4 3 7
7 KHVOSTOV, DMITRY DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
9 SAMOYLENKO, PETR 14:04 2 1/1       2 2 1   3     2 1 1
10 BYKOV, SERGEY 14:14 5 0/2 1/2 2/4         2     1 2 3 2
12 MONIA, SERGEY 18:16 9 1/3 1/1 4/4   1 1   1 1 1   3 2 8
13 VUJANIC, MILOS 25:56 4 2/6 0/1     2 2 6 1 2   2 4 4 4
14 DOMANI, DMITRY 9:35 2 1/1 0/1           1 1     3   -2
15 FOTSIS, ANTONIS 23:25 12 2/3 2/5 2/2 2 4 6 2   1 1   2 1 15
25 JAVTOKAS, ROBERTAS 34:12 10 4/7   2/5 4 6 10   1 4 3   4 8 18
31 MISANOVIC, NENAD 4:07           1 1               1
44 DOMERCANT, HENRY 30:23 20 4/7 3/9 3/5 2 4 6 1 1 2     3 4 16
45 KOROLEV, YAROSLAV DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Totals 200:00 78 19/35 8/26 16/24 8 20 28 11 9 15 5 3 27 26 70
        54.3% 30.8% 66.7%
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Akasvayu Girona
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
5 CVETKOVIC, BRANKO 26:44 8 1/4 2/5   1 4 5 1 1 1 1 1 3 1 6
8 SADA, VICTOR 36:22 3 1/7 0/1 1/2 1 2 3 7 6 2     2 8 15
10 McDONALD, ARRIEL 28:03 18 1/1 4/6 4/4       3 1 1     4 4 19
11 NAGYS, TOMAS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
15 DANIELS, ERIK 21:11 6 3/5 0/3 0/1 3 4 7 2 1 1 1 1 2 1 8
18 MONTANEZ, ROMAN 5:43 1   0/1 1/2   1 1   1 2       1  
19 SAN EMETERIO, FERNANDO 19:30 9 1/1 1/4 4/4 1 1 2     1     3 3 7
32 WHITFIELD, MAURICE 3:38       0/2   1 1     2     1 1 -3
33 GASOL, MARC 26:20 16 7/11   2/5 3 3 6 1   2   1 4 6 15
44 MIDDLETON, DARRYL 3:58           1 1           2   -1
55 RADENOVIC, IVAN 28:31 20 6/10 2/3 2/4 2 5 7   1   1 2 5 2 17
Team           1   1               1
Totals 200:00 81 20/39 9/23 14/24 12 22 34 14 11 12 3 5 26 27 84
        51.3% 39.1% 58.3%

Head Coaches

Dynamo Moscow
"First, I would like to congratulate Girona for the victory, for their excellent game. You know that one qualification game is not easy to play. We were a little, or maybe a lot more nervous, than Akasvayu. We didn't make very good decisions in the first 20 minutes on offense, but we compensated with very good defense. We controlled the result with defense, but we had a catastrophe in defensive rebounds, where we let Akasvayu have many double offenses, in the first 20 minutes, especially. The offensive rebounds that the Akasvayu players got gave them more confidence by the minute. That's why offensive rebounds are very important. In the second half, we didn't play. We started to argue with the referees, started looking for excuses. A team like Akasvayu that is very good in transition used this to make many points in a row. Like everybody saw, we started to play our game a little bit too late. We had, I think, a very good chance in the last minutes. With some energy and some fighting, we were in a good situation to win the game. Instead, we had one turnover and not a very good shot on offense. The games is over and I think that Akasvayu tonight played better than my team and I wish them good luck tomorrow in the game against Joventut."
Akasvayu Girona
"It was a game that in the first half was very even. I think we started and played with good rhythm. We were quite accurate with our outside shooting. In fact, within the evenness on the scoreboard, I think we were the slightly better team. We missed some easy shots at the end of the second quarter, and for that reason, the score was closer maybe than the difference on the floor. In the third quarter, we played really great, attacking well and working well at both ends of the floor. In the last quarter, whether due to tiredness or Marc Gasol's foul problems or us thinking the game was under control, we lost our concentration and started committing fouls when we should have been playing better defense. In the end, the game was a tossup, and I have to highlight that Arriel McDonald had the serenity and the heart of a champion to give us the free throws it took to win the game. Now, we have to recuperate our strength some, as we've had many players making a big effort these last two days, and we'll try to do our best at that. Joventut is a great team. They beat us in the final of the Catalan League, they won the Spanish King's Cup and they are near the top of the Spanish League. They are having what is really like a perfect season. Hopefully, we won't see them so perfect tomorrow. We will be like surfers who look for the perfect wave. We'll look for the perfect game tomorrow."


Dynamo Moscow
"It is not so easy to come back from 19 points down, especially in a game like a ULEB Cup semifinal. We got back in the game and gave it to them back again. We didn't play very well but managed to get back in the game and had chances to force overtime. Akasvayu deserved to win tonight and now we have to get ready for the third place game tomorrow."
Dynamo Moscow
"We fought back and put ourselves in the position of winning the game. I take responsabilities because I had a crucial turnover and I just apologized to our fans and to my team. I congratulate Akasvayu Girona. They played well and did the right things to win the game. We are all taking this loss pretty hard but we have to find a way to come together and try to get a win tomorrow. It is difficult but this what we have to do."
Dynamo Moscow
"This happened to us a couple of time this season. We played soft in the third quarter, didn't concentrate and allowed them to get a big lead. You don't have any energy. We finally woke up and came close. We have to learn from this, obviously our team didn't come in the best situation to the ULEB Cup Final Eight, not playing very well. We didn't show our best basketball but hopefully we will do better in the Russian League playoffs and finish the season strong. The third place game is a very important one for us tomorrow. We need to play it and win the game."
Dynamo Moscow
"We started the game too late. Things were not as we had prepared. We needed to rebound more than we did in the first half. When we started to play well it was a little bit too late and did not manage to complete our comeback. The third place game is very important for us. We have to come out and play the way we can. It is hard to lose a game like this and motivate for the third place game, but it is a must-win game for us because we are fifth in the Russian League. We need to win here to get back in the ULEB Cup next season."
Akasvayu Girona
"Definitely, we played 40 minutes as a team. This is probably one of our best games of the season. Marc didn't work in the first half, but he helped turn it around in the second half and Arriel knocked down the big foul shots at the end, showed great leadership and brought us home. I enjoy playing big games. I did that in college and I'm trying to do so in Europe. I was real excited to play against a big team in such a big game and I think I did a pretty good job. The final will be a very tough game. Every time we played against Joventut, it was a tough game. They have great individuals in Ricky Rubio and Rudy Fernandez and really all their 12 players are very good. But we have our own good players, too, so I think it'll be a great game for both teams."
Akasvayu Girona
"I think we played an impressive third quarter. We defended well, they didn't see spaces and on top of that we managed to run. I think it was great for the fans. It was logical that in the last quarter they would put more pressure on us and that made it more difficult for us to attack. Those steals by Victor and Arriel's free throws put us in the final. I think that playing a final you don't even realize how tired you are after two games in two days. I think it was to be today's game if that was to be a problem. When so many things are at stake, the will to win takes over tiredness. It would be great to win and the reception we would get in Girona, but first we have to think about Joventut and their good moment. The Euroleague is the big prize for us. The goal was to be in the Final Eight and once here we are."
Akasvayu Girona
"We just went to play hard for all the 40 minutes, all the team together. And that's why we won. We knew we were gonna win this game. Despite the last moments we stayed cool, that's why we practise every day, for situations like this. We weren't worried about it. I expect the win tomorrow against Joventut. That's what we came here to do."
Akasvayu Girona
"This is great. But we are not satisfied, we want to make it all the way. We know how hard it was to get here. We know how to suffer and this is very important to play a final. Despite having to play three games in a row, when you are in the final you forget about everything and the only thing you want to do is play right away and win, of course. The most important thing we have to do now is rest and get ready for tomorrow. We know Joventut, we know how to play against them."
Akasvayu Girona
"It was a very, very good surprise for us. Tough game. The last five minutes seemed like 30 minutes but we kept up, and it was a big one for us, man, big one. This is one of the biggest wins in my career. It is the best thing we ever did as a club. Last year we won the FIBA, now this is better than the FIBA, the ULEB, and if we can come away playing with intensity against Joventut who, by the way, is favorite, like Dynamo was, we'll have a chance."
Akasvayu Girona
"We are really happy. I think we didn't expect this win and going to the final because Dynamo has a lot of experience and a great team but these people who were here with us deserve it all. Now we are happy as if we had won something but we still have the game tomorrow. Anyway, we are doing a great job in this Final Eight and we are really happy. We gave them the big surprise. We set the pace throughout the 40 minutes, but we got a little nervous and at the same time they showed their level coming back. But the decisive games are just like this. Vujanic's three didn't go in, Domercant couldn't almost even shoot and we were there with Arriel and his cold head for the free throws. Tomorrow it will be the most difficult game. We know each other really well but it will be a dangerous game, like against Dynamo. We are not the favorites as it is clear that Penya is in a great moment. They won the King's Cup in Spain and lost to us in the Spanish League but we played great and they were rather bad that day... we'll see what happens."
No results found.