The rematch of last week's Adriatic League duel between hosts Hemofarm Stada and visitors KK Buducnost fell on Hemofarm's side this time. Thanks to an outstanding Stefan Markovic, who led the way with 33 points, the team from Vrsac survived 89-85 after the final parade of free throws. The game was a thriller from beginning to end as both teams held leads in turns, and things changed quickly with scoring bursts for both sides. However, Markovic and a great Miljan Pavkovic allowed the hosts to escape with the final win. Things get more interesting in Group H now as Hemofarm improves to 2-2 and Buducnost drops to 1-3 for third place and two games left. If Iurbentia Bilbao wins its game against CEZ Nymburk it will advance and that will only leave on possible berth for the Last 16. For Hemofarm, who was missingits key player big man Vladan Vukosavljevic due to injury, Pavkovic helped Markovic with his 15 points an MilanMacvan added 10. For Buducnost, Vladimir Dragicevic had 16 points, Marko Simonovic added 13, Nemanja Gordic and Vladimir Dasic posted 12 apiece and Ivan Maras contributed 11.
Nemanja Gordic opened the scoring race with two threes for Buducnost but Stefan Markovic's five points pushed Hemofarm to its first lead of the game soon, 9-8. Ivan Maras and Marko Popovic nailed new threes for the guests but Milan Macvan and Markovic supported their team with their points inside and outside to maintain slim margins, 20-14, after sealing an 11-0 run for Hemofarm, but Vladimir Dragicevic scored last in the quarter to leave Buducnost within 24-20. Milivoje Bozovic started the quarter with a bucket for Hemofarm but Buducnost was far from done. A 0-9 burst capped by Vladimir Micov's three made it 26-29 for the guests and Marko Simonovic punished the frontcourt even more, slamming for 28-33. Markovic tried to maintain Hemofarm alive but despite having 6 turnovers at that point, Buducnost was still in command when Gordic hit free throws for 32-40. Miljan Pavkovic's steal boosted the hosts a little and he soon added three more free throws that made it a new tie, 41-41. There was till some time left for Pavkovic to rise again and hit a new three to put Hemofarm ahead by 44-41 at the break.
Two straight threes by Maras to start the second half put Buducnost in command again and maintained a strong 9 of 15 from the arc for the guests. Popovic added a new bomb for Buducnost and Dasic soon slammed to close a 0-11 run that had turned things upside down again, 44-52. Bojan Krstovic finally reacted for Hemofarm with his layup and between Markovic and Petar Depotovic, the hosts turned back to life. All the stats aspects showed clear balance between both teams and the small edge was for Buducnost thanks to its oustanding proficiency from the three-point line. Triples by Markovic and Krstovic launched Hemofarm again to take control one more time, 56-54 as the hosts' defense was holding the rival's offense almost dry. Markovic was unstoppable scoring from everywhere and why Buducnost tried to deal with him in defense, in offense the guests only managed to score from the charity line to make it 65-66 after 30 minutes when Dragicevic left a layup. The last period started with Pavkovic hitting a three to tie it all again, 70-70. At this point, defenses stepped up as both teams saw the possibility of the win close and didn't want to commit any unnecessary mistakes and by minute 37, the score was still tied at 76-76. In the final steps of the game Markovic slammed and Macvan hit a three for the hosts that made it 83-78 entering the last minute. Dasic hit two free throws and Nikola Otasevic stole the ball and gave it to Simonovic, who scored suffered Markovic's foul. Hemissed the free throw at 83-82 however, but Markovic fouled again on Dasic. After a timeout, Dasic went to the line and scored only one attempt for 83-83 as it as Simonovic who fouled on Markovic this time. He scored both for 85-83 and there was time for another He4mofarm foul on Otasevic. In the line, he only scored the first attempt and after more Markovic free throws, he missed one again to allow Hemofarm escape with a valuable home win.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008