Golubovic has 51 index in Ankara's go-ahead win
Aykon TED Ankara Kolejliler became the Last 32 Group J champion by thrashing Dinamo Banco di Sardegna Sassari 104-75 at home on Wednesday. Ankara improved to 4-1 and is mathematically first, regardless of other scores. Sassari dropped to 2-3 and will need to beat Brose Baskets Bamberg by at least 12 points at home in order to qualify. Vladimir Golubovic paced the winners with a truly historical performance. Golubovic had 28 points on 12-of-15 two-pointers and 4-of-5 free throws, 17 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals for a performance index ranking of 51 - the third-best in Eurocup history. Vanja Plisnic added 22 points, Clay Tucker had 20, Kristaps Valters got 10 while Aleksandar Rasic dished 8 assists for Ankara. Travis Diener led Sassari with 13 points. Caleb Green and Drake Diener each added 12 while Marques Green had 11 for the guests. Plisnic and Golubovic shined early to give Ankara its first double-digit lead, 15-4. Ankara improved its margin to 31-18 on a three-pointer by Rasic but Travis and Drake Diener stepped up to make Sassari get its only lead, 36-37. Tucker, Valters and Golubovic allowed Ankara to get a seven-point edge, 48-41, at halftime. Sassari got as close as 54-53 right after the break but a dominant Golubovic allowed Ankara to get a 75-59 lead after 30 minutes, extending it to 86-61 to seal the outcome.
Three-pointers by Plisnic and Caner Erdeniz gave Ankara an early 6-2 lead. Amadeo Tessitori scored off a steal but Plisnic and Golubovic fueled a 9-0 run which Valters capped with a layup for a double-digit Ankara margin, 15-4. Drake Diener struck from downtown but Golubovic answered with consecutive layups for a 19-7 score. Manuel Vanuzzo hit a jumper and added back-to-back triples to bring Sassari closer, 22-15. Plisnic answered from downtown and a free throw by Omar Thomas fixed the score at 25-16 after 10 minutes. Plisnic and Rasic boosted Ankara's lead to 31-18 early in the second quarter. Travis Diener had 7 points in a 0-10 run that Marques Green capped with a triple that got his team within 31-28. Sassari found its regular go-to guy in Drake Diener, who singlehandedly completed the guests' comeback, 36-37. Tucker and Valters struck from downtown in a 9-0 Ankara run that Golubovic capped with a three-point play. Caleb Green and Thomas made free throws but Valters kept the hosts way ahead, 48-41, at halftime.
Golubovic scored again right after the break and Plisnic hit a three-pointer but Marques Green and Caleb Green answered from downtown for a 53-47 Sassari deficit. Golubovic split free throws but Marques Green and Caleb Green insisted from beyond the arc to bring the guests as close as 54-53. Tucker hit a jumper that Drake Diener erased with free throws. Golubovic stepped up with 8 points - including 2 dunks - in a 13-0 run that boosted Ankara's margin to 69-55. Caleb Green scored again and Drew Gordon made free throws but Tucker and Golubovic gave Ankara a 75-59 margin after 30 minutes. An unstoppable Golubovic had a layup, 2 free throws, 2 assists and a steal in an 11-2 run that sealed the outcome, 86-61, early in the fourth quarter. Gordon and Thomas stepped up with consecutive baskets but it was already too little, too late for the guests as all Ankara fans were already celebrating that their team will keep fighting for Eurocup glory!
Wednesday, February 12, 2014