17 September, 2019
01 January, 2020
Toure' Murry (BENF)
Game Report
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Qualification Round 1: Gameday 1 Round Up

MIES (Switzerland) - The first leg of Qualification Round 1 saw the hosts prevailing in five clashes, two teams claiming valuable wins on the road and one hard-fought contest ended with the scores tied, to set up some intriguing Gameday 2 match-ups.

The return leg of all eight ties takes place on Friday night, but first let's have a closer look at Tuesday's Gameday 1 action. 

Karhu Basket 93-86 Tsmoki Minsk 

The Finnish hosts squandered a 14-point first-half lead and fell behind by 5 points early in the fourth period, but finished on a 12-4 run to clinch a 93-86 win over the Belarus champions. Karhu shot an excellent 12 of 23 from three-point range, compared with 12 of 32 for Tsmoki-Minsk, who won the battle on the glass but otherwise failed to make the most of their size advantage.

Okko Järvi shot an outstanding 6 of 9 from behind the arc and led the Finnish side with 26 points, 5 rebounds and 2 steals while Samme Givens added 22 points. Dominez Burnett finished with 26 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists for Minsk in a losing effort.

Inter Bratislava 82-67 Fribourg Olympic 

A strong second-half showing lifted the Slovak champions to an 82-67 victory at home over the Swiss champions. Fribourg led by as many as 8 points in the first period and were up 37-34 at the break, but the Bratislava side outscored their guests 27-17 in the third frame and never looked back. Inter’s second unit contributed a valuable 42 points, while Fribourg only got 9 points from their bench.

Michal Batka paced the winners with 17 points on 4 of 7 from behind the three-point arc and 8 boards, while Lee Skinner came up with a double-double of 11 points and 10 rebounds. Timothy Derksen, who played for over 36 minutes, had 17 points and 8 rebounds for Fribourg.

Falco Szombathely 71-62 CSM CSU Oradea 

The Hungarian hosts overcame a slow start which saw them trail their Romanian visitors by 7 points to secure a 71-62 victory, fueled by dominant stretches in the second and third quarters. Falco relied on their excellent defense, which managed to hold Oradea to a poor 11.8 percent from long-range. A floater by Kristopher Richard almost at the final buzzer capped a late Oradea surge and reduced the point difference to single digits.

Szilard Benke and Marko Filipovity combined for almost half of Falco’s 71 points. Benke had 18 points and added 6 rebounds and 3 assists, while Filipovity finished with 17 points. Dragan Zekovic had 12 points and 5 boards in a losing effort for the Romanian side.

Keravnos 86-95 Bakken Bears 

The Bears got off to the kind of strong start every visiting team hopes for, grabbed a 20-point lead at half-time, and after the interval they held off a much improved Keravnos to celebrate a 95-86 win on the road. The Danish side run in transition at will during the first two periods and scored 21 points on the fast break, compared to just 3 for the hosts.

Forward Darko Jukic had 17 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists to lead a very balanced Bakken offense, as seven players scored 9 points or more for the visitors. Shooting guard Thomas Laerke was not far behind as he went 4 of 7 from downtown and finished with 16 points. Josh Hagins collected a game-high 21 points for Keravnos and added 7 rebounds and 4 assists, while Anthony King registered a double-double of 18 points and 10 boards.

Södertälje Kings 79-64 Balkan Botevgrad

The Swedish hosts led the Bulgarian visitors from start to finish and secured a convincing 79-64 victory after leading by as many as 21 points in the third quarter. The Kings made the most of their clear superiority on the glass as they brought down 48 rebounds, compared to Balkan’s 30. The hosts scored 42 points in the paint, while the Botevgrad team had 24 points in the painted area and hit only 24 percent of their shots from behind the arc.

Dino Pita scored 20 points on 4 of 6 shooting from three-point range, Charles Callison had 15 points and Alexander Larsson added 14 points and 8 rebounds. Marko Radonjic finished with 14 points while Dimitar Dimitrov had 13 points and 6 boards in losing efforts for the visitors.

SL Benfica 95-65 Donar Groningen

The Portuguese eagles earned Gameday 1 bragging rights as they claimed the largest winning margin anywhere on Tuesday, with a 95-65 triumph over Donar Groningen at home. Benfica raced to a 26-13 lead at the end of the opening period and used another run in the third period to stretch the lead to 30 points shortly before the end of that frame.

Benfica shot an amazing 16-for-30 from behind the three-point arc, while Donar were only 6 of 26 from downtown. Joao Gomes, with 21 points on 5 of 6 shooting from long range, and Micah Downs with 20 points, 5 assists and 4 rebounds, paced the winners. Donte Thomas finished with 16 points and 7 boards for Donar.

Kapfenberg Bulls 66-66 BC Kyiv

Too close for comfort - the Kapfenberg Bulls v. BC Kyiv clash could not be any tighter

In fitting fashion, the nail-biting clash between the Austrian hosts and the Ukrainian visitors which featured no less than 26 lead changes ended in a 66-all draw. The Bulls shot the ball slightly better from long range, as they hit 43 percent of their triples compared with 37.5 percent of Kyiv. The Ukrainian side however had a slight edge inside and prevailed 37 to 31 on the glass, while also scoring 24 points in the paint.

Bogic Vujosevic was the only player anywhere on Tuesday to score more than 30 points, as he finished with 31 on 7 of 16 shooting from the floor and added 5 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 assists. Kasey Shepherd had 14 points and 2 assists for Kyiv, while Deon Edwin finished with 13 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists.

Sigal Prishtina 79-81 Legia Warszawa

The Polish visitors prevailed 81-79 in a game of runs in Kosovo which saw the two teams taking turns in squandering double-digit leads. Drew Brandon sunk two free throws with 53 seconds left on the clock to put Legia ahead and the hosts missed first from the foul line and from behind the arc on the ensuing possession.

Michael Finke poured in 26 points on an outstanding 10 of 13 from the floor to pace the Warsaw side, who out-rebounded Prishtina 40 to 31. He got a lot of help from Keanu Pinder, who collected a double-double of 14 points and 12 boards. The hosts’ Fahro Alihodzic also registered a double-double as he finished with 20 points and 12 rebounds in a losing effort.