EWE Baskets Oldenburg survive scare from UNET Holon
OLDENBURG (Basketball Champions League) - EWE Baskets Oldenburg survived a scare to prevail 87-86 over UNET Holon on Wednesday evening.
The victory saw EWE finish 9-5 for third place Group A, thanks to Pinar Karsiyaka upsetting AS Monaco.
It was also almost an upset in Germany, with Holon fighting back from 17 down with a dominant third quarter to get right back into the game and push Oldenburg to the edge.
The home-side overcame a game-high 24 points from Glen Rice Jr, and another 22 from Terrell Holloway, as he only missed 3 shots.
Rickey Paulding led Oldenburg with 14 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists, Armani Moore also had 14 points, whilst Frantz Massenat finished with 13 and 7 assists, as six players reach double digits.
"I think we had a good start to the game," Oldenburg's Marko Bacak said. "We had a lot of fast break points, moved the ball and made our shots.
"At the beginning of the second half, we let Holon get easy shots and they got back into the game and from that point on it was tough, very close but in the end we were able to come up better and win the game."
UNET Holon Coach Dan Shamir was disappointed with how his side opened the game but took confidence in their second half bounce back.
"First half was very bad," he said. "I think our players can play better basketball than what we showed here.
"I can't be satisfied with losing the game, but at least in this area we got it together in the second half and played better. We lost to a good team, congratulations to them on both qualifying and winning the game."
A win for Holon would have seen them qualify for the FIBA Europe Cup, but instead their season on the continent comes to an end.
EWE pounced on Holon early, getting their first double-digit lead six and a half minutes in after an Armani Moore three; Oldenburg showed their range in the opening quarter, going 5-of-7 from beyond the arc to take a 27-16 lead.
The home side continued where they left off in the second quarter. Massenat hit his third three without a miss to help the lead balloon to 42-25 - their biggest lead of the game - with 4 minutes to play in the half. EWE Baskets led 45-32 at halftime.
Holon looked dead in the water, but their fortunes changed after the break. A 6-0 start to second half got them right back into it, 45-38, forcing an Oldenburg timeout.
Back to back threes from McConnell extended the lead back to double digits, 54-44, and it seemed as though Oldenburg had steadied the ship.
However, Holon were not done, immediately reeling off an 8-2 run, before Rice hit a deep three to beat the third quarter buzzer and tie the game up at 62.
Holon got their first lead of the game on a full court outlet pass and finish from Chanan Colman 30 seconds into the final period and the upset appeared to be on.
Multiple lead changes would ensue, until Paulding hit a huge 3 with little over a minute to play to take it to a four point game which proved to be the dagger.
One final TJ Cline three with 9 seconds remaining made it a one point game, but Oldenburg moved the ball beautifully on their final possession to avoid getting fouled and secure the win.