Vanja Plisnic - Aykon TED Ankara vs. Nizhny Novogorod
Billy Keys - Bisons Loimaa
Eight more teams can celebrate Last 32 tickets after Round 9. Congratulations to Dinamo Banco di Sardegna Sassari – which also clinched first place in Group B – CAI Zaragoza, BCM Gravelines Dunkerque, Khimik Yuzhne, Hapoel Migdal Jerusalem, Pinar Karsiyaka Izmir, Panionios Athens and Radnicki Kragujevac and. The six remaining spots will be decided in Round 10! It was a double celebration in Kragujevac, where the home team’s point guard, Marko Marinovic, tied the Eurocup single-game assists record with 15.
Group A: Telenet Ostend edged Cibona Zagreb 82-85
Wednesday for its seventh win in Group A. Oostende now shares first place with FoxTown Cantu, but the Italian team holds the tiebreaker between them. Ryan Thompson paced Oostende with 18 points, 2 steals and 3 assists. CEZ Nymburk took a crucial 86-74 win over group leader FoxTown Cantu
. The Czech champs improved to 5-4 and retain a chance to advance to the Last 32. Rasid Mahalbasic amassed 21 points and 9 rebounds for a performance index rating of 30 to lead Nymburk, while Tre Simmons collected 19 points and 9 assists. Le Mans Sarthe Basket downed Artland Dragons Quakenbrueck 65-44
. Le Mans will advance to the Last 32 by winning its next game in Oostende, or if both teams lose because of its tiebreak advantage over Nymburk. JP Batista scored 10 of his 15 points in the third quarter to lead Le Mans.
Group B: Dinamo Banco di Sardegna Sassari beat Cedevita Zagreb 77-68
at home on Wednesday to clinch first place in Group B. Omar Thomas led the winners with 21 points and 8 rebounds. Sassari had already advanced to the Last 32 on Tuesday by virtue of Elan Chalon-sur-Saone edging Bilbao Basket 81-79
in a thriller. Jordan Aboudou paced the winners with 19 points, while A.J. Slaughter finished with 13 points, 7 assists and 6 rebounds. Belgacom Spirou Charleroi topped EWE Baskets Oldenburg 74-82
on the road to deny the hosts the chance to reach the next round. Oldenburg will qualify if it beats Bilbao Basket next week or if it loses by up to 4 points and Cedevita Zagreb tops Elan Chalon-sur-Saone. Demond Mallet scored 17 points to lead the Spirou attack.
In a battle for the first place, Union Olimpija Ljubljana defeated Ratiopharm Ulm 74-61
, using a 19-4 start to the fourth quarter to pull away behind 17 points on 4-of-5 three-point shooting from Jakov Vladovic. Both teams are 7-2, and already qualified for the Last 32, but Olimpija holds a tiebreaker over Ulm atop of the standings. Valencia Basket dominated Cimberio Varese 62-94
, hitting 13 three-pointers to improve to 5-4. Pau Ribas paced the winners with 23 points on 5-of-7 three-point shooting. Meanwhile, in an all-French showdown, Paris Levallois rallied from 14 points down to upset Asvel Villeurbanne Lyon 72-74
as Andrew Albicy had 14 points, 9 assists and 6 rebounds in victory. Asvel dropped to 4-5, and will face Valencia in a winner-takes-all showdown next week, while Olimpija will win the group if it wins at already-eliminated Paris.
After all teams played in Group D, the Last 32 qualifiers were clear. Already-advanced Alba Berlin moved to 7-2 and wrapped up first place with a solid 72-83 road win over second-place BCM Gravelines
(6-3) as Vojdan Stojanovski poured in 21 points. Third-place CAI Zaragoza lost 83-81 at already-eliminated Virtus Rome
, just as fourth-place Telekom Baskets Bonn lost 91-90 in overtime to last-place Belfius Mons Hainaut
. Those two losses mean that Gravelines clinched a place in the Last 32, too. And, since Zaragoza (5-4) has the head-to-head tiebreak advantage over Bonn (4-5) - having won their second game by 19 points after losing the first in Germany by 4 - the Spanish team advanced in its Eurocup debut!
All three Last 32 spots in the group are now accounted for. Khimki Moscow Region’s 95-76 road victory at Pinar Karsiyaka Izmir
– its eighth straight win to improve to 8-1 – allowed the team to clinch first place in Group E. Paul Davis paced Khimki with 21 points. Despite dropping to 5-4, Pinar also advanced to the Last 32 thanks to Igokea Aleksandrovac beating Lukoil Academic 74-61
. Nemanja Gordic led Igokea with 16 points off the bench. The other Last 32 ticket sits with former champ Hapoel Migdal Jerusalem, which booked a 69-77 victory at CSU Asesoft Ploiesti
. Josh Duncan led the way for Jerusalem with 16 points and 9 rebounds. Hapoel hosts Izmir next week in the Israeli capital in a direct clash for second place.
On Tuesday Khimik Yuzhne defeated PAOK Thessaloniki 70-58
and became the second team from the group to advance to the Last 32. Khimik trailed 23-33 at halftime, and the game was tied late in the fourth quarter 51-51 before the hosts pulled away behind Paul Delaney who finished with 16 points, 5 assists and 4 rebounds. PAOK is 5-4, and will need help to advance, because Aykon TED Ankara Kolejliler edged already qualified Nizhny Novgorod 87-92
on Wednesday behind 23 points from Clay Tucker. Ankara is also 5-4, but beat PAOK twice this season. In a game between already-eliminated teams, Alba Fehervar edged Buducnost Voli Podgorica 82-80
behind 24 points from Ramone Moore, as both teams hold 2-7 record.
Group G: Unics Kazan demolished VEF Riga 98-51
to remain unbeaten. The game was already decided by halftime when the hosts ledy 38-25 and then started the second half with an 11-1 run. Unics excelled from beyond the arc with 15 of 24 threes led by Luke Harangody with 16 points and Andrew Goudelock with 15. Banvit Bandirma downed Maccabi Haifa Bazan 95-76
at home to keep its Last 32 hopes alive, while keeping already-through Haifa from clinching second place. Chuck Davis paced the winners with 20 points and Sammy Mejia added 19. Kalev Cramo Tallinn bested MZT Skopje Aerodrom 84-69
to give its fans a parting gift in the Eurocup. Ty Abbott tallied 25 points, 6 rebounds and 4 steals for the victors. VEF Riga hosts Bandirma in a head-to-head duel for a Last 32 spot in Riga next week.
The Last 32 picture from the group was completed through Wednesday’s three games. Panionios Athens outlasted Besiktas Integral Forex Istanbul 77-67
to advance alongside Besiktas, which had punched its ticket last week. Erick McCollom scored 17 and Marc Carter added 16 plus 6 rebounds for the winners. Bisons Loimaa beat Spartak St. Petersburg 77-88
on the road to temporarily extend its season, but its Last 32 hopes came to an end later when Radnicki Kragujevac defeated Neptunas 91-81
. Bisons used a 0-8 run bridging the third and fourth quarters to take the lead for good and iced the game with a late 0-9 charge for the game’s first double-digit lead. John Williamson paced the Finnish champs with 24 points and 9 rebounds. Radnicki’s victory sent it into the Last 32 in its first season in the competition. A major factor in the win was playmaker Marko Marinovic, who tied the Eurocup single game assists record with 15. Radnicki led from start to finish, boosting the difference into the 20s before Neptunas closed the gap late in the fourth quarter. Sava Lesic dominated early and finished with 20 points and 8 rebounds in just 16 minutes for the winners.
Follow all the action as it happens live on Eurosport 2 – and of course, as always, right here on Eurocupbasketball.com!