The Artland Dragons of Germany managed to make it to the Last 16 for the second consecutive season as on Tuesday night they defeated visiting BC FMP by 73-62. The win allows the Dragons to improve their record to 3-3 which grants them second place in Group G, as they had defeated Fortitudo twice already and would win all possible ties with the Italian team. The Dragond will land in Group L of the Last 16. Meanwhile, BC FMP drops to 1-5 and finished last in the group. The game featured both teams scoring runs in turns, but the Dragons kept the upper hand thanks to an inspired Darren Fenn, who Fenn led the winners with his 20 points. Lamont McIntosh added 15 and Adam Hess posted 14. For FMP, Nikola Ilic had 19 points and Predrag Samardziski added 12.
The Artland Dragons got off to a 13-2 start as Adam Hess scored 9 of those points. But FMP soon showed that it wasi n Germany to try to win the game, or at least, to make it hard for the hosts to get a victory. A 0-11 reaction led by big man Predrag Samardziski quickly led FMP back in the game to tie at 13-13. Darren Fenn stopped the bleeding with his own basket but this time, FMP wouldn't allow the same situation of the start of the game happen again. Fenn again though, sealed the outcome of the first period with a three-point play for 18-15. Lamont McIntosh slammed the ball for the Dragons starting the second quarter for a 5-point lead, and he soon scored again to seal a starting 8-0 that earned the Dragons a new double-digit lead, 27-15. Nikola Ilic stopped the avalanche this time with a layup for 29-17 that started a 2-10 burst by the guests. FMP kept punishing the rim of the Dragons in the final plays of the first half through Dejan Musli and Filip Covic to make it 36-33 at the break.
The second half started way more balanced and FMP even took control of the situation as Ilic's basket put the guests ahead, 40-42. However, Dirk Madrich stepped up for the Dragons as he led a 9-0 reaction together with McIntosh to put the hosts back in command, 49-42. Madrich was still the go-to man in offense for the hosts, but Samardziski re-appeared after some minutes for FMP to score two free throws that closed the scoreboard at 53-50 after 30 minutes. The last period stertd like the first and the second, with the Dragons taking control with a 13-3 starting run led by Hess, Madrich and Fenn to make it 66-58 for the hosts. Drew Neitzel joined the scoring party of the hosts as FMP found itself struggling in offense with 2 of 15 three-pointers, even though the Dragons were shooting 2 of 13 also. Samardziski hit new free throws in what could be the last chance for FMP to get back into the game, 68-60 in minute 39. Fenn replied to that with a three and Neitzel had a new layup to make it 73-60 as the fans went into a frenzy.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009