| Valencia Basket of Spain eased into the halfway point of the Eurocup Regular Season with a perfect record thanks to an impressive 97-64 over s.Oliver Baskets Wurzburg of Germany on Tuesday. Valencia is now 3-0 and on the brink of qualifying to the Last 16 while Wurzburg fell to 1-2. Valencia rode the hot hand of Justin Doellman, who scored 29 of his 31 points in the game's first 26 minutes, to victory. Doellman made 9 of 9 two-pointers and blocked 3 shots on his way to the young Eurocup season's highest individual scoring performance yet. Bojan Dubljevic followed with 18 points for the winners, while Marko Keselj had 14 and point guard Rodrigo San Miguel posted game-highs of 9 assists and 9 rebounds. Valencia dished the team's most assists ever in Eurocup play, 28. Wurzburg, which only trailed by 6 points at halftime, got 13 points from Dwayne Anderson, 12 from Jason Boone and 10 from Jimmy McKinney, but couldn't find a way to stop the winners.
Doellman assisted Pau Ribas to start the game, but it was Wurzburg, on a dunk by Boone and a triple by Alex King, that took a quick 2-5 advantage. Doellman used 2 layups, the second with a free throw attached, to re-take a 9-7 lead for Valencia, but the same combo of dunk and three-pointer, by Boone and McKinney this time, sent Wurzburg back in front. Doellman's first three-pointer and 3 free throws soon after got Valencia back on top, 17-15. After John Little's game-tying layup at 17-17, Valencia got the best of the last 2 minutes' worth of free throws to lead 20-18 after one quarter. Little and Anderson forced a couple more ties for the visitors before Dubljevic and Keselj blasted back-to-back triples to put Valencia up 30-24. Keselj's next strike from the arc only served to delay Wurzburg's surge to within 33-32 on a layup by McKinney. That's when Doellman reappeared to start and finish a 9-0 run highlighted by Chris Quinn's triple, which was good for the game's first major lead, 42-32. It was all that Little and Boone could do to trim the difference for Wurzburg to 44-38 heading into the halftime break.
Keselj and Doellman poured it on right out of the lockers by raining back-to-back long-range shots to spark a 16-5 run that put the hosts comfortably in front, 60-43, midway through the third quarter. When Anderson answered for Wurzburg with a triple, Doellman waited only seconds to reply, taking his personal total to 29 points already. His teammates guarded the difference from there, trading baskets for Wurzburg free throws as Valencia held a 69-52 edge after 30 minutes. Despite giving up a triple to Christoph Henneberger of Wurzburg to start the final quarter, the Valencia defense took over, allowing the visitors just 3 more points, on a single shot Anderson, over more than 5 minutes. Meanwhile, Rafa Martinez was dishing 2 assists and knocking down 2 free throws as Valencia's lead topped 20 points, at 79-58. Wurzburg couldn't threaten then as the fans in Valencia enjoyed another dominant outing by their team.
Tuesday, November 20, 2012