Besiktas Cola Turka won a showdown to stay in first place in Group B by blasting the Koln 99ers 79-60 on Tuesday at home in Istanbul, Turkey. Besiktas improved to 2-0 and could be sole leader by the end of the Week 2 action, while Koln dropped to 1-1. Preston Shumpert and Sandro Nicevic scored 16 points each for the winners, while Kaya Peker finished with a double-double of 13 points and 10 rebounds and Christian Dalmau added 12 for the home team. Immanuel McElroy was Koln's only double-digit scorer, with 13 points.
Besiktas took over early, racing to a 9-2 advantage on a three-pointer by Shumpert, but Koln answered immediately. The visitors' 2-9 reply over 2 minutes tied it up 11-11 on Aleksandar Nadfeji's basket. Besiktas saw the danger and raised its level of the toughness on defense for the remainder of the quarter as points inside by Nicevic and Peker gave the hosts a 23-18 edge after one quarter. Peker keep on scoring inside to begin the second quarter, while young guard Mehmet Yagmur and Rick Apodaca fueled the rest of a 15-6 Besiktas run. Yagmur's acrobatic layup-plus-free throw made the score 38-24 halway through the quarter, but 5 points from John Bailey helped Koln reduce the difference before Shumpert's tip-in at the buzzer left Besiktas in front 44-31 at halftime. The hosts started the second half as a copy of the first, extending their lead to 19 points with Peker's single free throw at 53-34. Kold answered with a 0-7 burst that included Milko Bjelica's three-pointer and reduced the gap to 12 points, 53-41, on a jumper from Makro Keselj. However, Nicevic returned to scoring to keep Besiktas 16 points ahead at the end of the third quarter, 60-44. Koln's pressure in the last quarter to come back was not effective, as Besiktas increased the lead to 22 points, 75-53, with a late three-pointer from Cevher Ozer on the way to an easy victory in Group B.
Besiktas Cola Turka head coach Ergin Ataman
"It was an important game for us. We won the game, we played good basketball and we also had a good difference at the end. We showed and proved that we are one of the candidates for the title. But at the same time, I have to mention that I feel disappointment about the fans. I was expecting a lot of attention from our fans for the game, but they upset me. I understant that they are angry about the results in football, but this is basketball, and we have build up a top-quality team for them, targeting the top both in ULEB Cup and Turkish League. So I want to see our arena packed with them for the good of these targets."
Besiktas Cola Turka center Kaya Peker
"It was really a very important game for us. We didn't want to lose at home. Today, we were planning to win first and than get a good margin at the end. We got what we needed. Because at the end of the group stage, those differences can help us. We are aiming high in the ULEB Cup. This is a hard competition, but we are aiming to go to the top. We believe this and, of course, we also want to play the same way at the weekend against Efes Pilsen in Turkish League."
Koln 99ers head coach Sasa Obradovic
"It's a pure victory for Besiktas Cola Turka. They beat us in every quarter, every part of the game. We have problems to organize our game. We couldn't handle the aggressive defense of Besiktas. On the other hand, we knew that it would be very hard to win here. They have a lot of quality, a Euroleague quality, in this team with plenty of top-quality players. The starting five is excellent. They are one of the favorites of our group. We could do a better job. The difference could have been lower maybe. Anyway, this is a pure victory for them."
Koln 99ers forward Yassin Idbihi
"Besiktas is an incredibly good team. They played very disciplined, very smart. We are a very young team. We didn't play hard enough. We can only beat a team as good as Besiktas if we play one-hundred percent all during the game. We didn't do that today"
Wednesday, November 14, 2007