| Spartak St. Petersburg managed to pull its second win of the season, first at home, on Wednesday evening thanks to a final quarter pull to defeat Cholet Basket by 69-60. The win leaves Spartak undefeated at the top of Group G with a 2-0 record, while Cholet drops to 0-2. The game was balanced until minute 26 when Patrick Beverley and Josh Carter combined for four threes that opened a 64-55 gap that was too much for the guests to recover from. Beverley ended the game with 21 points, 13 of them in 8 minutes bridging the third and fourth quarters, to lead the winners. He scored 4 of 5 threes. Nikita Kurbanov and Loukas Mavrokafelides added 11 apiece. For Cholet, Marcus Goree led the way with 15 points, Terrell Everett added 14 and Rudy Jomby and Travon Bryant hit 13 apiece.
Cholet Basket had a good start in the first minutes of the game with a 0-6 run including 4 points by Terrell Everett. Janis Strelnieks hit a three for Spartak to get the hosts running, but that was it for a while as the guests went up to 3-11 after Rudy Jomby's three. Spartak could only land a couple free throws more until the end of the quarter from Zach Wright as defenses prevailed for a 8-13 after 10 minutes. Spartak reacted at the start of two and hit a 4-0 run to trim the deficit down to 12-13. Patrick Beverley soon blasted a three to put Spartak ahead for the first time, 15-13, as Cholet tried to regain its momentum. Jomby hit a three to tie the game at 21-21, and at that point the game was back and forth for both teams with constant lead changes until the halftime buzzer displayed a 31-32 for the guests.
Defenses were, again, the major referent after resumption. Both teams pressed hard in the paint and scoring was kept at low standards. Loukas Mavrokefalides and Everett traded baskets for the hosts and the guests, respectively, and then Beverley scored for a new tie, 35-35. Josh Carter soon added a three that made it 38-35 but it was already minute 25. The game stayed close for the remaining of the quarter. Jomby's three put Cholet ahead again at 43-44, but then again, two free throws by Beverley earned Spartak a new edge, 47-46. Two more free throws by Marcus Goree put an end to the third period with Cholet ahead, 47-48. Wright's three for Spartak opened the decisive period. But Cholet was up for the challenge, and the constant lead changes never stopped. Both teams were basically balanced on every aspect on the stats sheet at this point with a 55-53 on the scoreboard and 5 minutes left. The 13 to 9 assists for Spartak was probably the only figure where the teams were noticeably apart from each other, but even the total index rating at this point was 55-53 for the hosts. However, with a 52-53 on the scoreboard, Beverley and Carter teamed up for three unanswered three-pointers that suddenly changed the scenario to a 61-53, forcing Cholet's timeout. Travon Bryant and Goree teamed up to keep Cholet alive but this time Beverley fed Strelnieks fo another three to keep things calm, 68-60. Finally, Beverley scored a last free throw just before the final buzzer to give Spartak the second win of the season.
Wednesday, November 14, 2012