2007-08Last 32Round 1
February 19, 2008 CET: 18:00
Local time: 18:00 HALA PIONIR
Tadija Dragicevic - Red StarTadija Dragicevic scored when he was needed the most to give Red Star an 81-71 win over Benetton Tamoil Treviso at Pionir Arena in Belgrade, Serbia, in the first leg of the teams’ Last 32 round series. Dragicevic scored 7 consecutive points early in the first quarter to give Red Star a sizable early advantage and added a second 7-point burst late in the fourth to protect it. Red led throughout the game, going up 16-7 thanks to Dragicevic’s early heroics. The lead remained in the 10-point area for much of the evening, settling at 45-36 at halftime and 60-49 after 30 minutes. But when Benetton big man Mario Austin heated up from downtown, the visitors clawed their way back to 70-69 with three minutes to go. However it was Dragicevic to the rescue, allowing Red Star to keep the lead and regain a margin that leaves both teams hope for the second leg. Dragicevic finished with 23 points and 12 rebounds, while Omar Cook added 17 points and 8 assists and Mladen Sljivancanin had 10 to lead Red Star. Austin finished with 24 points, Reece Gaines added 14, Pops Mensah-Bonsu had 11 points and 12 rebounds and John Lucas scored 10.

Red Star came out on fire as Dragicevic had 7 straight points and 2 steals during an early 12-2 run as the hosts built a 16-7 lead. A minute later the gap was in double digits. Cook inspired another charge as Red Star went 7-2 and held a 30-19 lead after 10 minutes. Benetton continued with weak defense, allowing Red Star players lots of easy baskets. The visiting team tried using long-distance shooting to cut the gap, but the results were poor and Red Star led 38-23 four minutes into the second period. Finally Mensah-Bonsu managed to stop the hosts’ storm by leading 0-7 run. Switching to zone defense, Benetton was happy with a 45-36 score at the half.

Red Star held Benetton scoreless for almost 4 minutes at the beginning of the second half, as the hosts scored 5 straight points before Gaines answered with 4 points of his own for Benetton. The teams were trading baskets, which allowed Red Star to maintain a comfortable lead. The hosts were looking satisfied, as the third period ended at 60-49. Benetton surprised Red Star with a zone at the beginning of the final period. Soon the score was 62-58, but Boris Bakic scored from downtown to reestablish the hosts’ safe lead. When Cook and Austin traded triples, the margin remained at 7 points, but Austin cut it to 4 with another three. But it was not all. Austin fired another bomb and the score was 70-69 with three minutes to go. Dragicevic struck back with 7 straight points and Slivancanin joined him in Red Star’s 9-0 game-saving run. With one minute left, the score was 79-69 and 2 more points for each side kept a margin that gives both teams hope for the second leg.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Aca Ostojic, Belgrade
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Referees: PITSILKAS, NIKOLAOS (GRE), SPIRIDONOS, LEONIDAS (GRE), LOTTERMOSER, ROBERT (GER)
Attendance: 1500
By Quarter1234
Red Star30151521
Benetton Tamoil19171322
End of Quarter1234
Red Star30456081
Benetton Tamoil19364971
Red Star
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
6 KRASNIC, IGOR DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
7 MARKOVIC, STEVEN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
9 KIKANOVIC, ELMEDIN 23:50 8 2/3   4/4   3 3 1         4 2 9
10 COOK, OMAR 37:00 17 1/2 4/9 3/3   1 1 8 3 5     3 3 18
11 KOVAC, MIRKO 15:34 2 1/2       1 1 1         2   1
16 RAICEVIC, MIROSLAV 14:24 8 3/3 0/2 2/2 3 1 4     1     3 1 7
20 DRAGICEVIC, TADIJA 35:04 23 7/11 2/8 3/3 2 10 12 3 1 3   1 3 6 28
21 LEKIC, MARKO 6:42 4 2/2     1 1 2     2     3   1
31 CVETKOVIC, MARKO 7:07     0/1                   1   -2
32 SLJIVANCANIN, MLADJEN 27:26 10 3/3 0/7 4/4   3 3 2 2 1     2 4 11
33 BAKIC, BORIS 32:53 9 2/3 1/4 2/2 2 2 4 1 1     1 3 2 9
Team                   7           7
Totals 200:00 81 21/29 7/31 18/18 8 22 30 16 14 12 0 2 24 18 89
        72.4% 22.6% 100%
Head coach: KARADZIC, STEVAN
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
Benetton Tamoil
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 AUSTIN, MARIO 29:52 24 6/12 3/6 3/3 4 4 8 2 1 3     2 6 27
6 ATSUR, ENGIN 9:19 2 0/1 0/3 2/2       2   3     2 1 -4
7 SORAGNA, MATTEO 7:45               1   1     2 1 -1
8 CHALMERS, LIONEL 24:26 6 1/2 1/7 1/2   1 1 1 1 6     1 3 -3
9 MORDENTE, MARCO 20:32 2 1/1 0/4   1   1 1         1 1  
10 MARTINONI, NICCOLO DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
11 JOHN, LUCAS 25:54 10 2/3 2/5     3 3 2 2 1     1 2 13
12 MENSAH-BONSU, POPS 29:11 11 4/7   3/4 4 8 12 1 1   1   3 4 23
15 GIGLI, ANGELO 20:00 2 1/1     2 2 4   1   1   3   5
18 GAINES, REECE 33:01 14 2/6 2/3 4/8   1 1 3 1 1     3 6 12
19 RENZI, ANDREA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Team                   4           4
Totals 200:00 71 17/33 8/28 13/19 11 19 30 13 11 15 2 0 18 24 76
        51.5% 28.6% 68.4%
Head coach: MAHMUTI, OKTAY

Head Coaches

KARADZIC, STEVAN
Red Star
"Very important win for us with a solid point difference. Without Markovic and Kovac we were weak at the front positions but we played tough defense never letting Benetton to make easy points. All my players deserve congratulations because they left their hearts on the court. We made a sensation with a team like this. We missed a lot of triples but we were tired because only 60 hours before we had played a derby with Partizan."
MAHMUTI, OKTAY
Benetton Tamoil
"Congratulations to Red Star for the win they deserved. We did not play well in defense nor in offense. Maybe it can sound rough, but we made so many stupid things and we did not deserve a better score at the end."

Players

DRAGICEVIC, TADIJA
Red Star
"We entered the game great because we prepared it well. I think we played excellent in defense all the way. There could be more points in Benetton's basket but we missed so many shots. Anyway, 10 points is not a big capital but it is quite good. We have seven days to prepare for the rematch."
AUSTIN, MARIO
Benetton Tamoil
"I think everything is still open. We played bad in defense but we surely can recover from a 10-points deficit in the rematch. The decision will come in Treviso."
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