Turk Telekom wins in Trento, 70-76
Turk Telekom Ankara celebrated its first road win in Group A by defeating host Dolomiti Energia Trento 70-76 on Tuesday. Turk Telekom improved to 4-3, three victories better than any of the three teams behind it in Group B entering Round 7. One of those Trento, which fell to 1-6. Trento never trailed in the game and led by as much as 13 points in the third quarter, but still had to shake off a Trento charge in the final 5 minutes to prevail. Aubrey Dawkins had 15 points for the winners, while JaJuan Johnson added 12, Dorukhan Engindeniz 11 and Can Ogut 10 plus 6 assists. For Trento, Cameron Reynolds had 21 points while Jordan Caroline had 20 points and 12 rebounds.
Johnson and Jonathan Williams got their respective teams going with short-range shots before Aaron Harrison put Turk Telekom in front 2-4. Reynolds tied for Trento but Erdi Gulaslan had 6 points in a 2-10 charge that Johnson finished as the visitors zoomed ahead 6-14. Trento exited a timeout to get a transition triple from Reynolds and a jumper from Luca Conti at 11-14. Engindeniz answered from deep for Turk Telekom, but Reynolds kept it going and Desonta Bradford stole and dunked to trim the difference to 15-17 after 10 minutes.
Conti forged a tie to start the second quarter that Ogut broke with a step-back triple. Caroline converted Trento's first offensive rebound, but Dawkins reverse-dunked an alley-oop and drilled a triple on either side of Johnson's block and jumper. When Johnson backed down for a layup, Turk Telekom had its highest lead yet, 21-31. Caroline hit a trio of inside baskets and free throws to get Trento within 31-34 before Dawkins dunked off a steal for a 31-36 halftime score.
Dawkins rung up a triple to start the second half but Caroline continued getting to the line, keeping the hosts in striking distance, 34-39. Engindeniz and Anthony Clemmons rebuilt a 34-43 advantage for Turk Telekom before Dawkins reappeared from deep and Johnson detonated a dunk for the biggest lead yet, 36-48. Berk Demir and Engindeniz kept the visitors in front 41-53 before Reynolds drilled his and Trento's second triple, but Ogut copied him immediately. Only a late triple from Toto Forray let Trento keep the gap to single digits, 49-58, after 30 minutes.
Ogut fed Samet Geyik for a slam early in the fourth quarter, but free throws from Maximilian Ladurner and Bradford kept Trento within 55-60. Harrison added free throws for Turk Telekom but so did Caroline for Trento, for whom Ladurner added a long two-pointer at 59-62. Johnson came to Turk Telekom's rescue with a strong drive but Reynolds struck from the corner to make it 62-64 with 3:30 left. After Ogut hit free throws and Reynolds another basket, Engindeniz made 3 of 3 from the line and Dawkins downed a third-chance inside basket at 64-71 that proved enough for Turk Telekom to take the victory back to Ankara.
Pivotal performer: An ex-champ led Turk Telecom
From the moment he scored the game's first basket, center JaJuan Johnson was everywhere for Turk Telekom Ankara in Trento. He would finish as the second leading scorer for the winners, with 12 points on 6-for-10 two-point shooting while leading Turk Telekom with 9 rebounds and 3 blocks. All of it seemed to come in timely fashion for Johnson, a veteran whose resume includes EuroCup title with another Turkish club, Darussafaka Istanbul, in 2018. He finished with a team-high PIR of 19 in more than 27 minutes to lead Turk Telekom to victory.
Caroline gave Trento a chance
Despite his team's home loss to Turk Telekom Ankara on Tuesday, Dolomiti Energia Trento forward Jordan Caroline continued to impress in his debut 7DAYS EuroCup season. Caroline started slow but soon was piling up big numbers, finishing with 20 points and 12 rebounds for his third double-double in six starts, tying all EuroCup players with as many games. He finished with his second PIR of 31 this season. Only three other players have surpassed a 30 PIR twice so far this season. Among his rebounds were 7 of his own team's misses, matching the single-game high in the EuroCup season in offensive boards, in which he is now the competition leader at 3.7 per game.
Turk Telekom likes it in Trento
Turk Telekom Ankara is going to be happy to see any trips to Trento in its future. Tuesday's winners got their first road win of the 7DAYS EuroCup Regular Season in the same city where they got their last one, more than three years ago. Indeed, Turk Telekom now has a 3-0 record all-time vs. Trento after sweeping their first two meetings ever in the 2018-19 regular season. That time, Turk Telekom registered its first EuroCup win of any kind in almost a decade in Trento, but didn't win on the road again that season. This time, the visitors had not won away from Ankara this season until Tuesday. In fact, you would have to go all the way back to 2010 to find another team not named Trento that Turk Telekom has beaten on the road in the EuroCup.
Tuesday, December 14, 2021