Antwerp sole team to succeed on the road - Quarter-Finals, Gameday 1 Round Up
MIES (Switzerland) - Telenet Giants Antwerp were the only team to pick up victory on the road in the opening leg of the Basketball Champions League Quarter-Finals, whilst Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem, Brose Bamberg and Nanterre 92 all protected home court to get a step closer to the Final Four.
Here's a round up of all the action:
Nizhny Novgorod v Telenet Giants Antwerp
Telenet Giants Antwerp put in a masterful performance on the road for a 83-68 opening leg win over Nizhny Novgorod on Wednesday evening.
Paris Lee was spectacular on his way to 24 points - his second highest tally in a Basketball Champions League game - going 5-of-6 from three and 7-of-10 overall from the field, as Antwerp pulled away in the second half after being tied at the halftime break.
The visitors' lead ballooned to 16 at one point before a fourth quarter fight back from Nizhny that was stymied by baskets from Ismael Bako, Jae'Sean Tate and Hans Vanwijn - who punctuated the run with a dunk.
"It's far from over," Antwerp Head Coach Roel Moors said. "We knew we were stepping into an 80-minute game, and this is only the first 40. Good result for us, but we need the second 40 minutes to be like that, too."
Bako finished with 14 points for Antwerp, and Victor Sanders joined him double figures with 11.
Nizhny, who were without Ian Hummer, were led by 17 points and 8 assists from Kendrick Perry, Evgenii Baburin had 15, and Dmitrii Uzinskii had 11, but they will have to battle back from a 15 point deficit in Leg 2.
Notable Number: 15 - the final deficit, notable because no team has qualified for the next stage after having lost the 1st leg of a tie by 15 points or more in Basketball Champions League Play-Offs history.
Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem v Iberostar Tenerife
J'Covan Brown knocked down a pair of free throws with 1.3 seconds remaining to give Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem a 75-73 win over Iberostar Tenerife in Leg 1 of their Quarter-Final match up.
Tim Abromaitis' fadeaway game-tying attempt wouldn't convert, as Jerusalem prevailed in a much anticipated match-up that lived up to the hype. Tenerife used a 17-0 run to open the second half to stay in this one and will remain well within striking distance as they head back to Tenerife for Leg 2.
"I think the third quarter was something unique," Jerusalem Head Coach Oded Kattash said. "We didn't score for the first six minutes, it was a 17-0 run, and it's not something that happens every day, every game...Two points is nothing, I would've said the same thing if it was 8 or 10 points difference."
Brown led the scoring with 20 points for Jerusalem, James Feldeine scored 18, and Amar'e Stoudemire had 13 in just 16 minutes of action. Tamir Blatt played distributor as he dished out 9 assists.
Colton Iverson had a 20-points, 12-rebound double double, with Tim Abromaitis adding 16 points and 8 rebounds.
Notable Number: 10 - the number of points Jerusalem scored in the third quarter, their lowest ever in a Basketball Champions League game.
Brose Bamberg v AEK
Brose Bamberg will take a four point advantage, 71-67, into the second leg over AEK as they remain unbeaten since January.
Bamberg came from behind to start the fourth, taking the lead and retaining control over the final five minutes of regulation.
Cliff Alexander scored a season-high 19 points to lead Bamberg, whilst Augustine Rubit and Ricky Hickman had 12 each.
"We had a great start to the game," Bamberg's Hickman said. "But it was really up and down, and sometimes we made some mistakes, turnovers, but for the most part I thought we did a really good job competing on defense."
AEK were dealt a blow with the loss of Jonas Maciulis who is a question mark for the reverse fixture next week.
"We have a few regrets," AEK Head Coach Luca Banchi commented. "A few mistakes that we will try not to repeat in the next round.
"We know very well who we have in front (of us), Bamberg have no losses in the last 12 games, and we have to approach the next game with the idea to do something more. Something special, because it will be the only way to beat this team."
AEK had five players in double figures, led Dusan Sakota who scored 15, with 14 points for Jordan Theodore.
Notable Number: 4 - the deficit, making it the second time Brose Bamberg and AEK have the same margin, after winning 77-73 on gameday 10.
Nanterre 92 v Segafredo Virtus Bologna
Nanterre 92 finished strong for a 83-75 win over Segafredo Virtus Bologna to take an 8-point lead to Italy for the second leg.
With the score tied at 62 early in the fourth, Nanterre reeled off a 13-4 run to take control, sparked by Julian Gamble who had 7 of his 12 points.
Jeremy Senglin had 16 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists to lead five players in double digits for the French side, Gamble added 12 rebounds, whilst Adas Juskevicius had a game-high 8 assists.
"Eight points against a team like Bologna is nothing," Nanterre's Haukur Palsson commented. "Especially going there... It's a good win, great that we won, but we just need to think like it's 0-0."
Bologna will have their work cut out next week, and were led by Kevin Punter's 15 points, with Amath M'Baye and Tony Taylor having 11 each, and Mario Chalmers 10 with 5 assists before fouling out in 15 minutes of action.
Notable Number: 8 - the eight point margin represents the biggest defeat Bologna have suffered in the Basketball Champions League.