2018-19Regular SeasonRound 9
December 11, 2018 CET: 20:30
Local time: 20:30 PABELLON FUENTE DE SAN LUIS

Valencia locks up first place in Group C

Valencia Basket locked up first place in Group C by holding off Zenit St. Petersburg 97-89 at home – a result that left Zenit waiting until Round 10 to see if can advance to the next stage. Five players scored in double figures for Valencia, topped by Sam Van Rossom and Matt Thomas with 19 points each. Will Thomas added 18, Bojan Dubljevic 12 and Fernando San Emeterio 11. Valencia improved to 7-2 in the group including a perfect 5-0 record at home. Zenit dropped to 4-5. The visitors played without the competition's leading scorer Sergey Karasev, who was a last-minute scratch due to a back injury. Jalen Reynolds totalled 21 points, 4 rebounds and 3 steals for Zenit, while Vladislav Trushkin had 17 points, Philip Scrubb 13 and both Vadim Panin and Evgeny Voronov had 10 points.

Valencia started the game white-hot in hitting its first six shots, including 3 three-pointers for a 15-4 advantage. The hosts cooled off and Zenit started to find its way with a Voronov three-point play and a three from Scrubb to get the gap to 25-19. Valencia led 27-19 after 10 minutes. Valencia went cold and allowed Zenit to get back into the game with Vadim Panin and Trushkin both knocking down triples as the guests evened the score at 34-34. Zenit was held scoreless for two minutes and Will Thomas scored 2 baskets in helping Valencia jump ahead 46-38. It was 47-40 at the break. Valencia began hitting three-pointers in the third quarter to wrestle control of the game with Dubljevic, San Emeterio and Matt Thomas all knocking down a three and Will Thomas draining two from the outside for a 65-51 lead. Reynolds tried to keep Zenit close with 10 points in the quarter, including his first three-pointer since the 2016-17 season. Scrubb's triple made it 70-62, but the hosts were up 74-62 after 30 minutes. Zenit used some tough defense to get back into the game, holding Valencia to 3 points in the first four minutes with an Anton Pushkov three-point play and Trushkin three cutting it to 77-70. Valencia found its game anew and Guillem Vives and Van Rossom both hit triples. The gap was 93-80 with two minutes left. A Panin three-pointer and then two Valencia turnovers and Zenit baskets trimmed it to 93-87 with one minute to play. Van Rossom sealed the outcome with 2 foul shots with 45 seconds left for the win.

Game-changing sequence

Zenit was within 7 points with just more than three minutes left, but Valencia went on an 8-2 run to make it 93-80 and that was too much for the guests to overcome.

Pivotal performer

Sam Van Rossom not only scored 19 points, but he also grabbed 2 rebounds, dished out 5 assists and had 1 steal - not to mention 2 free throws with 45 seconds left, to stifle Zenit's final comeback attempt.

History made

Valencia's Rafa Martinez became the first player to start 100 games in EuroCup history. The 36-year-old veteran tallied 3 points, 1 rebound and 1 assist in nine minutes.

Season debut

The game also saw the return to the court of Valencia's Antoine Diot. The Frenchman played four minutes in the first half with 1 rebound and 1 assist in his first action in 14 months.

Telling numbers

Valencia won the game on the glass with 29 rebounds – including 10 offensive boards – compared to Zenit's 19 total rebounds.

In Round 10

Valencia will finish off its group play with a road game at Dolomiti Energia Trento. Zenit must wait until Round 10 to secure a Top 16 ticket when it returns home to host LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne.

Matt Thomas - Valencia Basket (photo Valencia) - EC18
Tuesday, December 11, 2018
Eurocupbasketball.com
Referees: BELOSEVIC, ILIJA; BISSANG, JOSEPH; RADOJKOVIC, JOSIP
Attendance: 6168 (Tentative)
By Quarter1234
Valencia Basket27202723
Zenit St Petersburg19212227
End of Quarter1234
Valencia Basket27477497
Zenit St Petersburg19406289
Valencia Basket
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
6 ABALDE, ALBERTO 11:25 4 2/2 0/1   1 1 2 1 1 2     2 1 4
7 LABEYRIE, LOUIS 18:26 2 0/2   2/2 2 1 3   1       1 2 5
8 DIOT, ANTOINE 4:04           1 1 1   1     1    
9 VAN ROSSOM, SAM 24:26 19 4/6 2/2 5/6   2 2 5 1 1     2 3 24
10 THOMAS, WILL 26:48 18 6/7 2/2   2 3 5 1   1   1   3 24
13 TOBEY, MIKE 11:56 3 1/1 0/1 1/2 1 3 4 1   2     2 1 3
14 DUBLJEVIC, BOJAN 22:49 12 3/7 2/4   2 3 5 3 1 1     2   12
16 VIVES, GUILLEM 12:34 4   1/2 1/2 1 1 2 1   2     1 3 5
17 MARTINEZ, RAFA 9:02 3   1/1     1 1 1   1       1 5
19 SAN EMETERIO, FERNANDO 24:20 11 4/4 1/3     3 3     4     2 3 9
21 THOMAS, MATT 19:09 19 4/4 2/8 5/5       2   1     3 2 13
42 DOORNEKAMP, AARON 15:01 2 0/2 0/1 2/2 1   1 1 2   1   2 2 4
Team           1 2 3               3
Totals 200:00 97 24/35 11/25 16/19 11 21 32 17 6 16 1 1 18 21 111
        68.6% 44% 84.2%
Head coach: PONSARNAU, JAUME
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Zenit St Petersburg
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
2 REYNOLDS, JALEN 26:49 21 8/10 1/1 2/3 1 3 4 1 3       1 2 27
7 KARASEV, SERGEY DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
11 MILLER-MCINTYRE, CODI 27:47 2 1/2 0/4   1 1 2 9 1 5     2 3 5
14 PUSHKOV, ANTON 9:09 7 3/4   1/1   1 1     1     2 1 5
16 TRUSHKIN, VLADISLAV 26:19 17 4/7 3/7   1 2 3 3 1 1     2 1 15
18 VORONOV, EVGENY 24:04 10 3/5 0/2 4/5 1   1 4   2     4 7 11
19 SIMONOVIC, MARKO 4:29     0/1     1 1           1   -1
20 PANIN, VADIM 22:24 10 2/2 2/3     2 2 1         4 1 9
21 UTHOFF , JARROD 15:03 4 2/3 0/1     3 3 1 1       2   5
23 SCRUBB, PHILIP 28:34 13 2/5 3/4   1 1 2 4 2 2 1 1 1 1 15
31 VALIEV, EVGENY 15:22 5 1/1   3/4       1 1       2 2 6
Team             1 1               1
Totals 200:00 89 26/39 9/23 10/13 5 15 20 24 9 11 1 1 21 18 98
        66.7% 39.1% 76.9%
Head coach: KARASEV, VASILY

Head Coaches

PONSARNAU, JAUME
Valencia Basket
"Sometimes I was happy with the defense and sometimes I was happy with the offense. But we are getting our philosophy on offense with rhythm and moving the ball. And we only had difficulties against strong defense when they played tough defense. But I am happy. And our defense sometimes is good, especially if we can play aggressively. Today I am really happy with our defense in the front court."
KARASEV, VASILY
Zenit St Petersburg
"We tried to show our maximum, but we still have problems with the roster. Karasev did not play today because of an injury he suffered with the national team, plus Valiev was slightly injured during the game. The second half we actually played with six. Valencia scored several very difficult shots, that is, we acted competently in defense, but the opponent made the difference with these shots. We need to continue to fight, we have a chance to go further, we need to beat ASVEL in St. Petersburg."

Players

THOMAS, MATT
Valencia Basket
"It is a good win. Obviously, Zenit is very talented and they have a lot of good players. They beat us in their place, so it was our turn to take care of business here at home and I am glad we were able to do that. It was a similar game, I think, to the one we played in St. Petersburg, a very high-scoring game. Like I said, they have a lot of talented players in their team, but I think we could have done a lot better job defensively. It is something we will continue to work on."
SAN EMETERIO, FERNANDO
Valencia Basket
"They gave us a lot of problems in our previous game; it was a high-scoring game, just like tonight. I believe that defenses were not able to stop their opponents. We are a team with a lot of offensive talent and in the end, we won because we hit the right shots down the stretch. These two weeks allowed me to catch a little bit of rhythm. Due to injuries and circumstances, I was not able to have a preseason and it is hard to find the rhythm - slowly but steadily! We have to focus on the things we can control, which is finishing first and waiting for the next group. No matter who we play, it will be a tough group for sure."
VAN ROSSOM, SAM
Valencia Basket
"The last couple of weeks the team is doing things a little bit better. We're playing a little bit better defense and from that we can run a little bit more on offense. We never had the opportunity to really run away from them, but I think we controlled the entire game."
SIMONOVIC, MARKO
Zenit St Petersburg
"We played a very good game against one of the best in the EuroCup. We can be very satisfied with this game and the way that we played with some important players out. We fought until the end and were very close to winning, but they had better concentration and won in the end. Congratulations to Valencia. We are having a lot of injury problems and our goal is to prepare well for the next two games, in the VTB League and the EuroCup."
PANIN, VADIM
Zenit St Petersburg
"Tough game, but we play with a short rotation. Sometimes we were so close, but Valencia increased their advantage in key moments. Karasev didn't take part because of the injury, so we lost one of our shooters. After tonight's Partizan victory, we have to win our last game against ASVEL."