Antwerp use home support to stun Bamberg for third place
ANTWERP (Belgium) - Telenet Giants Antwerp rode the support of over 16,000 fans to secure a 72-58 win over Brose Bamberg, to claim Third place in the 2018-19 Basketball Champions League season.
As the final buzzer sounded in front of a raucous crowd who were on their feet, Antwerp completed a fairytale season to claim Third place in the competition, the first time they made it through qualification to the Regular Season.
Jae'Sean Tate provided the inspiration for Antwerp, registering 16 points in under 19 minutes, Tyler Kalinoski joined him in double figures with 10, whilst Hans Vanwijn had 9.
"I thought Coach did a great job of getting our heads ready for today," Tate said in the post-game press conference. "Of course we want to be playing right now (in the Final)...but it shows we've matured over this past year. I thank my team, my coaches and I'm gonna celebrate this one."
Head Coach Roel Moors added:
"I'm very proud of my team, the way they stepped up today in a not so easy game, because you want to play for the first spot and now you have to play for the third spot. They showed a lot of character and I'm really happy for these guys that they were able to produce their basketball that they've showed all year long."
Louis Olinde and Arnoldas Kulboka were the top performers for Bamberg, finishing with 12 and 10 points, respectively.
"I think we had a tough two games," a disappointed Olinde said after the game. "We just didn't show up, obviously. Gotta figure things out moving forward and prepare for this month...Tough weekend for us but we have to build on that, try to get better and learn from our mistakes."
Bamberg Head Coach Federico Perego commented:
"First of all congratulations to Antwerp and Coach Moors for his award, I believe it was really deserved. I believe that the second quarter killed us. We wanted to show a difference face to Friday because we came here because we deserved it, but the game on Friday was really tough to digest. We tried to compete until the end but we made some mistakes that cost us."
Bamberg struck first, to lead by as many as nine in the first quarter behind 6 points a piece from Rice and Zisis, but a fightback led by Tate reduced Bamberg's lead to three, 18-15 after the opening period.
Tate sparked a 15-2 run in total by the hosts, as they took back control, before extending it to a 11 point halftime lead, 37-26, as Tate had a personal tally of 14 on 5-of-7 shooting at the break.
A 6-0 run to open the third from Bamberg gave the impression Coach Perego had rallied his team during the break, but Antwerp quickly answered with a 5-0 run of their own and kept Bamberg at bay.
In the fourth quarter, Antwerp continued to lay it on thick, extending their lead to as many as 20 to cruise out winners and pull off the upset, for their first win over Bamberg in three attempts this season.